‘Haemovigilance is a set of organized surveillance procedures related to serious adverse or unexpected events or reactions in donors or recipients, and the epidemiological follow up of donors.’
A haemovigilance system is an integral part of quality management in blood services, developed for continual improvement of quality and safety of the transfusion process. It covers processes throughout the transfusion chain, from blood donation and processing to transfusion for the monitoring, reporting and investigation of adverse events and reactions and near-misses related to blood transfusion.
A system of haemovigilance is dependent on the traceability of blood and blood products from donors to recipients and reports of adverse transfusion reactions. Information generated through this system may inform changes in transfusion standards, assist in the formulation of transfusion guidelines and contribute to increased safety and quality of the entire transfusion process. Staff of HBBs are encouraged to report adverse events and near misses that may affect blood product quality and safety and other safety concerns related to blood transfusion.
The haemovigilance system of every HBB involves all stakeholders and coordinated between the blood service, hospital clinical staff and blood bank laboratories, hospital transfusion committees, regulatory authorities and health departments.