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21 October update on blood supply and demand challenges


Read this update

Patient Blood Management

Patient Blood Management (PBM) is a multidisciplinary, evidence-based approach to optimising the care of patients who might need a blood transfusion. 

PBM follows a number of international and national initiatives over the past 20 years supporting the safe and appropriate use of blood. It was launched in England in June 2012; experts and influencers in the field considered how to ensure the adoption of the Patient Blood Management approach. The conference and subsequent recommendations had the support of NHS England.

PBM is a success story, the reduction in inappropriate transfusion helps to ensure the availability of blood components when there is no alternative; however NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) continues to work with NHS England and the National Blood Transfusion Committee to further support NHS Trusts to manage their blood use effectively. Audits have shown that there remains inappropriate use of blood and blood components. 

For all things PBM follow us on Twitter @PBM_NHS

Our latest resource - PBM toolkit, August 2020

The toolkit provides guidance and advice on implementing Patient Blood Management strategies in clinical practice. There are 6 core strategies and a summary checklist that underpin appropriate use, patient safety and blood conservation.

Go to the toolkit on our Education page

Transfusion 2024

The Transfusion 2024 conference in March 2019 provided an opportunity for NBTC and NHSBT to work collaboratively with hospitals, Royal Colleges and other professional bodies, and patient groups to determine the future of transfusion care. 

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 recommendations agreed at this event will be available soon. 


Choosing Wisely UK

Choosing Wisely UK is part of a global initiative aimed at improving conversations between patients and their doctors and nurses; it is an opportunity to promote good practice, and ensure that patients receive appropriate information and participate in decisions about their care. There are five transfusion related recommendations submitted from the Royal College of Pathologists (RCPath), and one from the Intensive Care Society.  This leaflet provides more information.

2018 Patient Blood Management Survey

Following the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) Quality standards for blood transfusion (2016) and Guidelines (2015), we surveyed NHS Trusts in England on their progress towards implementation of this guidance.

The results of the survey includes specific actions for Trusts to implement PBM and for NHSBT to support this implementation.

Developing Terms of Reference for Working Groups

This guidance document outlines the key areas that need to be considered and included when developing Terms of Reference for a PBM Working group. Our template can be adapted for use in your Trust.

Why Patient Blood Management matters

Find out why Patient Blood Management matters, who can help and what is being done.

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National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE)

NICE guideline Blood Transfusion [NG24] was published in November 2015 and covers the assessment for and management of blood transfusions in adults, young people and children over 1 year old.

NICE Blood Transfusion Quality Standard [QS138] was published in December 2016 and covers the general principles of blood transfusion in adults, young people and children over 1 year old and describes high-quality care in priority areas for improvement. To audit your compliance with QS138, please use our gap analysis tool.