Safely stewarding donated blood at Vancouver General Hospital
In August 2022, Vancouver General Hospital (VGH) became VCH’s first Using Blood Wisely site. With this designation, VGH joins a select group of Canadian hospitals recognized by Choosing Wisely Canada and Canadian Blood Services for their commitment to responsible red blood cell stewardship and the continuous pursuit of quality improvement.
Achieving the Using Blood Wisely designation validates the work of VGH’s Transfusion Medicine team. They have dedicated the last five years to updating their red blood cell transfusion program to enhance patient safety while responsibly managing the donated blood supply, a precious resource in great demand.
As part of the Using Blood Wisely designation process, the Transfusion Medicine team measured the initiative’s effectiveness against national benchmarks. Results showed that VGH's red blood cell transfusion program meets and often exceeds these standards.
“This designation validates the effectiveness of blood transfusion quality improvement initiatives we have designed and implemented. It gives us confidence that as a hospital, we are committed to appropriate and responsible blood transfusion practice.”
– Dr. Krista Marcon, Hematopathologist and VGH’s Using Blood Wisely Physician Champion
The program’s success is the result of a team effort: health care staff and medical staff played an important role by adopting updated workflows and practices. VGH’s Using Blood Wisely designation symbolizes a combined dedication to patient safety and the appropriate use of red blood cell transfusions.
VGH’s red blood cell transfusion program model is now expanding to other VCH hospitals.