Blood transfusion safety

Global consultation on 100% voluntary non-remunerated blood donation of blood and blood components

Place: Melbourne, Australia
Date: 9–11 June 2009

The ‘Global consultation on 100% voluntary non-remunerated donation of blood and blood components’, was held on 9-11 June 2009 in Melbourne, Australia. Its objective was to review the current barriers to achieving a safe global blood supply based on 100% voluntary non-remunerated blood donation (VNRBD) and then to identify strategies and systems that will assist in meeting the goal. The Consultation also resulted in the development of a ‘Melbourne Declaration’ which will become a useful advocacy tool for WHO and other stakeholders to build government commitment to the principle of a safe and sufficient blood supply based on 100% VNRBD.

More than 30 years after the first World Health Assembly resolution (WHA28.72) addressed the issue of blood safety, many countries still lack consistent supplies of sufficient safe blood to meet the needs of their health care systems. Family replacement and paid donation continue in many countries even though there is convincing evidence that they are both less safe and that their use can inhibit progress to a safer system based on 100% VNRBD. The consultation assessed the nature of the barriers that are preventing countries from realising this goal and reviewed the strategies and interventions that will assist progress towards this goal.

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