AIT: European Patient Blood Management (PBM) Project started

Good Practices in the Field of Blood Transfusion

The AIT Austrian Institute of Technology has been awarded a contract to develop "Good Practices in the Field of Blood Transfusion" by the Consumers, Health and Food Executive Agency (CHAFEA) of the European Commission. AIT will be joined by a group of three leading experts to jointly develop an "EU Guide for Member States on Good Practices for Patient Blood Management (EU-PBM)”.

Definition and Rationale of Patient Blood Management PBM is a multidisciplinary concept that primarily focuses on patient safety by (1) consequently avoiding and/or treating anaemia, (2) minimising blood loss and bleeding and (3) optimising the physiological reserve of anaemia. Studies have shown that this comprehensive strategy significantly minimises the use of allogeneic blood products and therefore reduces their adverse effects on patient outcome. It has also been demonstrated that PBM saves costs for health care systems.

The main objectives of the project are 1st to study and map blood use for different medical specialities, 2nd to identify and describe regional and national differences in blood utilisation and PBM strategies, 3rd to identify good practices in PBM and 4th to develop an EU guide on good practices for PBM. This guide, which targets healthcare professionals, has to be applicable in different hospital settings and to include an evaluation strategy by using key indicators.

The project team is led by Prof. Dr. Hans Gombotz, Head of the Department of Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care at the General Hospital in Linz, Austria. He has been a pioneer in developing the PBM concept over the past decade, including two ground breaking studies on the practice of blood transfusion in Austria. Since AIT, with its leading experts Dr. Günter Schreier and Peter Kastner, already served as a Contract Research Organisation in these two preceding projects it is also in a good position to serve as the prime contractor in the EU PBM project, taking responsibility for project and information management as well as biostatistics. Further members of the core project team are Prof. Dr. Dr. Kai Zacharowski, FRCA, (Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine and Pain Therapy, University Hospital Frankfurt) and Dr. Axel Hofmann (Department of Anesthesiology, University Hospital Zürich and School of Surgery, University of Western Australia).

Furthermore, the project team will be advised by an international panel of 7 additional experts and will collaborate with all national competent authorities concerned, who will play a pivotal role regarding the regulatory framework of the project.

About AIT Austrian Institute of Technology
The AIT Austrian Institute of Technology, Austria's largest non-university research institute is a specialist in future key infrastructure issues among European research institutes. The AIT, which comprises five independent and performance-driven departments (Energy, Mobility, Health & Environment, Safety & Security and Innovation Systems) and works in close collaboration with industry and customers from public institutions, strive to increase their added value through innovation and new technologies. The Safety & Security Department is making a significant contribution to ICT devoting concerted efforts to guaranteeing operational efficiency and reliability of all critical infrastructures. It is committed to the deployment of leading edge technologies in the area of public administration (eGovernment, eEnvironment), power grids, health care (eHealth), transportation networks, payment systems and telecommunications. The AIT has built an international reputation of health information systems, which are developed in close collaboration with key medical partners.

About Consumers, Health and Food Executive Agency (CHAFEA)
The CHAFEA manages the EU Health Programme, the Consumer Programme and the Better Training for Safer Food Initiative. It carries out all activities and programmes necessary in these fields, in particular those linked to the award of contracts and grants and the management of projects. It helps disseminate know-how and best practices, feeds back projects’ results to DG SANCO for policymaking and provides support in organising technical meetings, studies, seminars and conferences.

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