The patient identification check is a critical point in the transfusion process where errors are made. These mainly occur if staff do not follow established protocols, and result in no true check of the patient’s identity. These errors continue to occur despite the introduction of training and competency assessments for all staff involved in the transfusion process.
While professional responsibility must be taken by all personnel involved at each stage (SHOT Annual Report 2007) the final ‘bedside’ patient identity check is the last chance to detect errors that can occur earlier in the chain, as well as being a critical point for new errors.
Recent publications have highlighted the importance of patient identification, awareness and involvement:
In addition, the 2009 Serious Hazards of Transfusion (SHOT) Annual Report recommended: ‘A patient education campaign should empower recipients of blood transfusion.... to ask the staff, before they carry out the intervention: ‘Do you know who I am?’ Action: National Blood Transfusion Committee, DH, Trust/hospital CEOs’. http://www.shotuk.org/
Trusts, hospitals and other healthcare facilities, as well as patient organisations, are encouraged to hold awareness events as part of the 2013 'Do you know who I am?' campaign. To help, a guide to running a transfusion awareness event and supporting resource materials are available together with an evaluation form to help us gather valuable feedback for future initiatives.
Involving patients in their care can help make it safer, and targeted use of these materials will remind both staff and patients of the critical importance of ensuring correct identity.
The campaign was launched as part of a number of initiatives to highlight National Pathology Year 2012 organised by the Royal College of Pathologists.
These materials can be downloaded and printed. Alternatively paper copies and stickers with the ‘right patient’ logo can be ordered from the distribution hub operated by Access-24 by entering your Regional Transfusion Committee code. If you do not have a code please call 01865 381042.
Patient poster - out-patients (pdf 520KB)
‘Right patient, right blood’ Staff factsheet (pdf 556KB)
Flyer/screensaver (ppt 196KB) Can be adapted to publicise local campaigns.
Evaluation form (pdf 12KB)