NHS Blood and Transplant hosts conference to set blood transfusion priorities

NHS Blood and Transplant is today (26 March) hosting a conference to set the priorities for blood transfusion for the next five years.

26 March 2019

Transfusion 2024 logo: "Setting a 5-year strategy for clinical and laboratory transfusion practice"

Transfusion 2024 is a clinical symposium, organised in partnership between NHS Blood and Transplant, the National Blood Transfusion Committee, and NHS England.

The conference, which is being held at the Royal College of General Practitioners in London, will consider four key areas, including Patient Blood Management (PBM).

Professor Keith Willett gives a welcome speech on stageTransfusion of blood components is a lifesaving therapy for many patients. The risk of serious complications of a blood transfusion is very low but patients should only receive blood components they really need.

Over the last ten years there have been significant progress in best transfusion practice, supported by evidence based clinical trial, implementation of clinical practice guidelines and process improvements. Despite progress there is evidence of variability in practice and patient outcomes. There is a need to address the challenges of providing safe and appropriate blood transfusion.

Dr Shubha Allard, Clinical Director, Patient Blood Management Consultants’ Team and Catherine Howell, Chief Nurse Diagnostic and Therapeutic Services said: “Looking forward, there are many emerging opportunities to embrace new technology and innovation and to provide blood components that will further meet patient need. The conference provides an opportunity for NHSBT to work collaboratively with key stakeholders within the broader NHS to determine the future of transfusion care and encompasses our vision of saving and improving lives.”

As well as Patient Blood Management (a patient focused approach to improving outcomes), the conference will consider strategies around improving Hospital Transfusion Laboratory Safety (including pilots for integration with NHSBT Red Cell Immunology) and  Harnessing Technology and Innovation (for example donor genotyping) together with Transfusion and the wider NHS (with emphasis on patient safety).

Image: Professor Keith Willett, Director for Acute Care, NHS England gives a welcome speech.