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Blood Product Safety I: Foundation

According to the Centers for Disease Control, there are more than 9.5 million blood donors and 5 million patients who receive blood in the United States annually. This means that there are approximately 14.6 million blood transfusions each year. However, blood transfusion therapy is associated with certain inherent risks for the patient, such as infection and transfusion-transmitted diseases. Furthermore, with so many people involved and patients dependent upon these transfusions to maintain their health, it is extremely important that all healthcare professionals are aware of how to safely maintain and utilize blood products. This continuing education activity will review blood components in context of transfusion therapy, blood transfusions and key considerations in blood collection and testing to help nurses understand their roles in ensuring the safety of patients who receive blood and blood products.

Courseware Learning Objectives

After completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Recognize key features of blood
  • List methods used to keep the blood supply safe
  • Match blood components with how they should be handled and used
  • Identify special methods used to increase the safety of blood for high-risk recipients
  • List the risks and benefits of blood transfusion
  • List alternatives to blood transfusion