Rare blood donors are generally defined as being negative for a high prevalence antigen with a frequency of less than 1 in 1,000 or can be rare by being negative for multiple common antigens that are rarely found together in a donor. Examples of rare blood types that are negative for antigens of high prevalence include Rhnull, Bombay (Oh), Jr(a-) among others. Siblings of donors or patients lacking antigens of high prevalence are more likely to also lack the antigen than the general donor population. Some rare blood types are so rare that there are less than 10 donors in the entire world population of registered rare donors. Therefore international co-operation, along with current and accurate rare donor databases are important.
The ISBT International Rare Donor Panel – is managed by the International Blood Group Reference Laboratory - NHS Blood and Transplant and maintains rare blood lists provided by the ISBT WP rare donor members in order to ensure that patients who require lifesaving rare blood units can receive them.
What we do
- Work closely together with the ISBT International Rare Donor Panel
- Created a Flow Chart to Request Rare Blood from International Rare Donor Panel (IRDP)
- Prepared an International Rare Donor Card and Antibody Identification Card for Patients
- Gather information about outcomes of rare blood shipments
- Collect information about antigen positive transfusion rare blood was not available
- Prepare case studies to serve as learning tools about rare blood groups
- Offer practical and scientific advice to ISBT members who may wish to start rare donor program