New Naas Hospital blood exchange arrangement to benefit patients in emergencies

Embracing technology: Kildare and Dublin hospitals sharing expertise to help patients

Senan Hogan

Reporter:

Senan Hogan

Email:

senan.hogan@iconicnews.ie

New Naas Hospital blood exchange arrangement to benefit patients in emergencies

Helena Begley, senior medical scientist at Naas General Hospital with daughter Chloe, who required Blood Transfusion Services to save her life

Naas General Hospital has recently launched a new initiative, ‘Blood Exchange to Improve Blood Stock Management,’ in collaboration with the Coombe Women and Infants University Hospital and Tallaght University Hospital.

‘Blood Exchange to Improve Blood Stock Management’ required the introduction and management of a system which optimises blood usage in the three hospitals with a special focus on O Negative usage.

Vital blood type

O Negative blood can be given to virtually any patient regardless of their blood group which makes it invaluable in emergency situations.

However, only 8% of the population is O Negative and so donors are scarce and stocks are frequently low.

This initiative has seen an overall reduction in blood ordering, especially O Negative, across the three sites. Expiry rates are down to 1.1% overall and 0.4% if rare blood groups are excluded. This resulted in savings in excess of €30,000 in 2019.

Medical scientists in Naas General Hospital, the Coombe Women and Infants University Hospital and Tallaght University Hospital worked with the HSE, the Irish Blood Transfusion Service and First Direct Medical to implement this very successful initiative.

The success of this initiative has been recognised via shortlisting for the 2020 Health Service Excellence Awards and most recently as team winners in the Dublin region of the Health Innovation Hub Ireland (HIHI) Spark Ignite Awards. The national finals will be held shortly.

Alice Kinsella, general manager, Naas General Hospital, said: “An informative and engaging presentation was delivered to Spark Ignite Award judges by Helena Begley, senior medical scientist here at Naas General Hospital, on behalf the team including colleagues Fergus Guilfoyle, Coombe Women and Infants University Hospital and Alison Harper, Tallaght University Hospital.

“A professional passion for quality improvement in our Blood Transfusion Services was complemented by Helena’s own poignant previous personal experience of requiring Blood Transfusion services to save the life of her new born daughter Chloe.

“Congratulations to Helena, Fergus and Alison on their success, we wish them well in the finals,” she concluded.