Plea from NHS Blood and Transplant to conserve stock
12 Jan 2023
NHS Blood and Transplant have raised concerns about the possible impact that the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) strike action will have on their blood supply. In particular they have highlighted they are in a pre-amber alert as a result of low levels for both red cells and group A platelets.
A plea has been released for surgical teams' support to conserve stock from 16 to 30 January. This request has been issued to help avert going into an amber or red alert.
The blood stocks of O negative red cells and group A platelets will be those most affected. The key messages are:
- Decrease stockholding of red cells and platelets where it is safe to do so.
- To preserve O D negative red cell supplies
- To preserve group A platelet supplies
- Ensure that there is a plan in place to respond to any potential amber or red status alert
- Any delays to transfusion, or any preventable transfusions, should be reported to Serious Hazards of Transfusion (SHOT).
They ask for teams to consider alternatives to platelet transfusion. The college has previously published guidance on the use of tranexamic acid to reduce surgical bleeding.