Friday, 17 May 2013

A/Prof Erica Wood attends the World Health Orgnization Global Forum on Blood Safety

logoThe World Health Organization Global Forum on Blood Safety was held last week in Florianopolis, Brazil. The Forum brought together 250 participants from 60 developed and developing countries, members of the WHO Expert Advisory Panel on Transfusion Medicine, WHO Collaborating Centres, other UN organisations and key inter-governmental, non-governmental and professional organisations working to improve blood safety and availability. Associate Professor Erica Wood, Head of the Transfusion Research Unit, attended as a member of the WHO Expert Advisory Panel.

The Forum fosters global collaboration and enhance communication and information exchange. It meets every two years and provides an interdisciplinary and international opportunity for discussion of major areas of global concern. This year the focus was on identifying priorities for action in these key areas:

• Strengthening blood systems for universal access, including risk assessment and management for blood safety and availability
• Self-sufficiency in safe blood and blood products, based on voluntary non-remunerated blood donation
• Quality management and haemovigilance

Haemovigilance is a system for monitoring and preventing adverse consequences of blood donation and transfusion. Associate Professor Wood, in her roles with the International Haemovigilance Network and the International Society of Blood Transfusion, was invited to present to the Forum on key issues in implementing haemovigilance systems.

The Forum’s structured observations provide recommendations to WHO to guide priorities for action at national, regional and global levels, and strategies for their implementation.

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