A new process for reporting leaking red cells and platelet packs to us

Introduced 23 July 2021

30 July 2021

After an increase in the number of leaking packs being reported to us, we investigated (the results are outlined below) to find the root cause, then reviewed the process for reporting leaking packs, and on 23 July introduced a more convenient and quicker way of reporting for you:

Our new process (PDF 31KB) as a flowchart.

Can you discard the pack(s) on site?

If yes, then: 

  1. Take a photo of the damaged component
  2. Complete a Customer Complaint form (Word 132KB) including the donation numbers of any contaminated units
  3. Discard the leaking / contaminated units
  4. Email a completed complaint form and the photograph to Customer Services or your customer service manager
  5. Submit a replacement order on OBOS and discuss with Hospital Services if the order is urgent
  6. Submit a credit request 

If no:

  1. Contact Hospital Services
  2. Is it a single unit?
  3. If yes go to step 4. If no, go to step 5
  4. Hospital Services will arrange a bio bottle to be sent to your blood bank
  5. If you are returning a whole transport container, please secure it and mark for the attention of Hospital Services
  6. Return the bio bottle with the complaint form or the whole transport container on your next routine round
  7. Submit a replacement order on OBOS, and discuss with Hospital Services if the order is urgent
  8. Submit a credit request

It is crucial that the form is completed with as much detail as possible including a list of donation numbers of any units you were unable to use due to contamination. 

We encourage you to discard units on your site but understand that your capacity to do so may be limited, so there is an option to return units to your Stock Holding Unit. Please follow the process that best fits your situation at the time of the leak. 

  • Where a leaking pack has adversely impacted a patient, please inform us immediately so we can investigate it 
  • We no longer require the leaking unit to be returned physically to us; your information on the form will be forwarded onto the pack manufacturer for investigation 
  • We will not issue a formal response to these leaking packs unless new contributory factors are identified, or a response is specifically requested by you. 

Please be assured that the Customer Services team will continue to monitor and trend leaking packs when requests for credit are sent to us. 

The result of our investigation 

The standard process was followed in the main; with only rare occasions when it was not (we addressed these immediately and monitored); in most of these occasions manual handling looked to be the cause of damage to the packs (there were no other obvious reasons).

This is why it is important you continue to take care when handling components at low temperatures: the PVC packaging is fragile and likely to fracture if not handled carefully.

Deepa Takhar - Customer Service Manager