Substantial variability in practice exists in clinical transfusion, patient blood management and blood conservation in paediatrics. Neonates and children are frequently transfused patient populations, yet they are relatively under-represented in clinical trials and the evidence-base to guide practice is limited. A number of clinical practices are extrapolated from the results of adult studies. Yet neonates and children have unique pathophysiology, specific vulnerabilities and different risk profiles compared to adult transfusion recipients. A disproportionate number of transfusion adverse events are reported in the neonatal and paediatric age groups. Any adverse outcome related to transfusion is particularly important in these young recipients, as most are anticipated to live for many years post transfusion. Transfusion decision making in paediatrics needs to consider the potential risks and benefits of a transfusion and any alternatives to transfusion.
The Paediatrics subgroup of the Clinical Transfusion and Haemovigilance working parties of ISBT is an international group of professionals with an interest in neonatal and paediatric transfusion medicine and transfusion safety. Our objectives are to develop educational tools and resources, create a network that promotes the sharing knowledge, research and ideas, as well as act as a forum for discussion.
We meet at the biannual ISBT congress and hold regular teleconferences (2-3 times per year).