Errors in the requesting, collection and administration of blood components (red cells, platelets and plasma components) lead to significant risks for patients. The purpose of this guideline is to provide national guidance on pre-transfusion blood sampling and the authorization (prescription), requesting, collection and administration of blood components to adults, children and neonates in order to provide a basis for the development of standardised local guidelines and practice, and focuses on 3 key principles of safe blood administration: - Patient identification - Documentation - Communication

Serious Hazards of Transfusion (SHOT), has repeatedly identified that patients are harmed, and some die, as a result of being given the incorrect type of blood.

SHOT therefore recommends a structured process with a bedside checklist; an alert from the Chief Medical Officer 9th November 2017 provides information against which organisations should assess their bedside systems (see supplementary material).


Declaration of Interests

The BSH paid the expenses incurred during the writing of this guidance. None of the authors had conflicts of interest to declare. All authors have made a declaration of interests to the BSH and Task Force Chairs which may be viewed on request.