Transfusion of blood products

Meet the patient
A maximum of 10 minutes before the transfusion, record baseline observations: pulse, temperature, blood pressure, respiration rate
Discuss and explain the transfusion procedure with the patient
Establish venous access (before fetching the blood)
Fetch the blood product from the blood bank
Identity checks
Ask the patient to state their name and date of birth
Confirm identity against notes and wristband - do not transfuse unless the patient has a valid wristband
Verify the label (Name, DOB, NHS number) on the blood product against the patient's notes and wristband
Verify the blood group/expiry date/unit number against the compatibility form and patient notes
If the supplied blood group is different from the patient's group, ensure this fact is mentioned on the compatibilty from
Check the prescription sheet and compatibilty form for any special instructions
Infusion process
Assess the patient's general condition for the transfusion process
Determine whether the patient has had adverse reactions to previous transfusions
Ensure patency and security of the cannula, and check for swelling, inflammation, or pain
If the cannula has been used to asminister anything but 0.9% saline, flush with 10 mls 0.9% saline, prior to transfusion
Ensure that the blood is given a separate line from any other infusion
Feed the transfusion line through the warming device
Using aseptic technique, prime the giving set
Attach the infusion line to the cannula
Set the transfusion rate to that prescribed (max 4 hours)
Advise the patient to inform staff of any discomfort during the infusion
Visually assess the patient at regular intervals whilst being infused
Prevent circulatory overload by maintaining a fluid balance chart
When the transfusion has finished, flush the cannula (saline) and cap off - or remove the cannula of it is no longer required
Dispose of sharps
Log the transfusion, according to Blood Safety and Quality Regulations:
  • Number of each unit given
  • Start date and time of each unit
  • Finish date and time of each unit given