Blood transfusion safety

Universal access to safe blood transfusion

More than 30 years after the first World Health Assembly resolution (WHA28.72) addressed the issue of blood safety, equitable access to safe blood and blood products and their safe and rational use still remain major challenges throughout the world. While the demand for blood is growing in the developed world with longevity of life and increasingly sophisticated clinical procedures, national blood supplies are rarely sufficient to meet existing requirements in the developing countries. Evidence-based strategies for blood safety and availability have been successfully implemented in most developed countries and some transitional and developing nations.

Universal access to safe blood transfusion requires strengthening the implementation of key strategies to ensure access to a safe and sufficient blood supply, to achieve 100% voluntary blood donation and to ensure 100% quality-assured testing of donated blood. There is also need to optimize blood usage for patient health, develop quality systems in the transfusion chain, strengthen the workforce, keep pace with new developments and build effective partnerships.

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