Newcastle Laboratories


Blood Transfusion

The Blood Transfusion laboratory is committed to providing a range of specialist services looking at the antigens and antibodies to the many different human blood group systems. We can provide both standard and highly specialised blood and blood components to meet the diverse requirements of patients and will do so in a timely manner. We have a close relationship with our clinical colleagues providing education and competency assessment on a range of transfusion topics.

The department is MHRA compliant. We retain our full CPA accreditation status until we are assessed by UKAS against ISO15189 standard which is awaited. The laboratory participates in all relevant Quality Assurance schemes.

Downloadable Documents:

Blood Transfusion Special Requirements Notification Form

Obtaining Blood Sample for Blood Transfusion Competency Assessment

Blood Collection and Delivery Competency Assessments

Administration of Blood Products Competency Assessment

Transfusion Reaction Investigation Form

Our testing repertoire includes:

ABO and RhD grouping,
Antibody screening and identification,
Neonatal sample testing,
Compatibility testing including serological and electronic issue,
Antigen identification,
Ante Natal serology (including anti-D prophylaxis),
Kleihauer testing,
Cold Agglutinin Test,
Donath Landsteiner Investigation,
Direct Antiglobulin Test (DAT) ,
Preparation and distribution of blood and blood products (Red Cells, Platelets, Fresh Frozen Plasma, Cryoprecipitate, Human Albumin solution and many more).

The section is open: 24/7 365days.

Specimen Acceptance and Rejection:

The Blood Transfusion laboratory follows strict guidelines on sample labelling. Here is a list of Do’s and Don’ts for sample/request form labelling:

  • Do positively identify the patient by asking them to state their name and date of birth.
    • In-Patients – information on the wristband MUST match the information given by the patient.
    • Out-Patients – information in the notes MUST match the information given by the patient.
  • Do label samples next to the patient e.g. bedside and hand write the sample tube?
  • Do label the tube and request form with a biohazard sticker if this information is known?
  • Do sign the declaration on the request form as this is a legal requirement.
  • Don’t stick addressograph or eRecord labels on transfusion sample tubes. They can be used for the request form.
  • Don’t pre-label sample tubes.

Rejection Criteria

Samples will be rejected in the following circumstances:

  • The minimum essential information is missing from the sample or request.
  • The sample and request form information do not match.
  • The sample is unlabelled or otherwise unsuitable (e.g. wrong tube type, addressograph or eRecord label on sample).

The laboratory will allow certain amendments to be made and will contact the medical officer/practitioner stated on the request form. Amendments must be made by the staff member who took the specimen (evidence of the correct patient data must be provided) and can be made within 24hours (Ante Natal samples up to 5 days).

Compatibility testing:

The laboratory requires two Group and Save specimens taken a minimum of 12 hours apart in order to provide group specific blood products. Where this cannot be achieved the laboratory will consider a concessionary release of blood components provided the request meets certain criteria. Deviating from normal policy requires justifiable authorisation as soon as practicable.