The United Kingdom has four Blood Transfusion Services based in each of the four countries comprising the United Kingdom. These are; NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) for England, the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service (SNBTS), the Welsh Blood Service (WBS) and the Northern Ireland Blood Transfusion Service (NIBTS). The UK Blood Transfusion Services have a body to coordinate co-operation between Services called the UK Forum. The UK Forum has a Joint Professional Advisory Committee (JPAC) concerned with advice and standards which publishes the “Red Book” of transfusion guidelines, operating UK wide change notices on, for example, changes to donor deferral criteria. An independent body, the Advisory Committee on the Safety of Blood, Tissues and Organs (SaBTO) advises UK ministers and health departments on the most appropriate ways to ensure the safety of blood, cells, tissues and organs for transfusion/transplantation. Each blood service is accountable to health ministers in the relevant UK home country.
NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT)
NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) is a Special Health Authority, dedicated to saving and improving lives through the wide range of services they provide to the NHS.
Each year NHSBT collect around 1.7 million voluntary blood donations, which are then dispatched to hospitals to be matched with patients who desperately need them.
They manage the national voluntary donation system for blood and their challenge is to provide a safe and reliable supply of blood components, diagnostic services and stem cell services to hospitals in England.
Their therapeutic services teams work with hospital clinicians to provide patients with life-saving treatments for conditions such as leukaemia. This diagnostic work helps find the right treatment for patients with rare blood conditions and our translational research programme means we’re constantly aiming to develop safer and more effective treatments. They also provide diagnostic and therapeutic services outside the UK.
NHS Blood and Transplant,
Oak House, Reeds Crescent,
Watford, Herts, UK, WD24 4QN
Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service (SNBTS)
SNBTS is a division of NHS National Services Scotland (NSS) which is accountable for delivering a range of Specialist services to the Scottish NHS. NSS is a special agency of government responsible to the Scottish Government Health Directorate.
SNBTS has two blood processing and testing centres dealing with over 250,000 donations per annum from an active donor base of 185,000 collected by 13 teams operating across Scotland (population of 5 million). There are fixed site collection centres in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Dundee, Aberdeen and Inverness collecting both blood and platelets. Approximately 25% of blood is collected in fixed sites, 15% through Mobile Donor Units the rest through community sessions.
SNBTS has clinical services in five regional centres which deliver routine blood banking, reference work, H&I, stem cells, therapeutic apheresis and other specialist services.
SNBTS is the preferred provider of Tissues for Scotland and provides bone banking, tendons heart valves, skin along with some stem cell services and islet cell processing.
Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service, Ellen’s Glen Road,
Edinburgh, UK, EH17 7QT
Welsh Blood Service (WBS)
The Welsh Blood Service (WBS) provides blood components and services to the hospitals of the seven Local Heath Boards throughout Wales. The WBS is a division of the Velindre NHS Hospital Trust, which hosts a number of all-Wales healthcare organisations.
All processing and testing of blood is undertaken at a single site, in Talbot Green near Cardiff. About 110,000 donations are collected annually, mainly from community venues served by mobile collection teams, with about 20% being collected from bloodmobiles. Whole blood and platelet collections are also undertaken in the donation clinic in Talbot Green. The WBS has a centre in Wrexham, North Wales that serves hospitals in that region
Immunohaematology and tissue typing (H&I) diagnostic laboratories, the Welsh Bone Marrow Donor Registry and UK NEQAS for H&I are also based in the WBS facility.
Welsh Blood Service,
Ely Valley Road,
Talbot Green, Pontyclun, UK, CF72 9WB
Northern Ireland BTS (NIBTS)
The Northern Ireland Blood Transfusion Service (NIBTS) is an Independent Agency responsible for collection, processing, testing and issue of blood components to Northern Ireland client hospitals. The population served is 1.725 million. 46,000 red cell components are issued over9,000 platelet therapeutic doses and over 5,000 fresh frozen plasma components are issued annually. NIBTS is the only blood establishment in Northern Ireland and also provides a regional antenatal testing service and specialised blood group reference service for complex red cell antibody investigations and platelet antibody screening for Northern Ireland client hospitals.
N. Ireland Blood Transfusion Service,
Belfast City Hospital Complex,
Belfast, UK, BT9 7TS