The evolution of transfusion medicine into a clinically oriented discipline emphasising patient care has been accompanied by challenges that need to be faced as specialists look to the future. Emerging issues that affect blood safety and blood supply, such as pathogen inactivation and more stringent donor screening questions, bring new pressures on the availability of an affordable blood supply. Imminent alternatives for management of anaemia, such as oxygen carriers, hold great promise but, if available, will require close oversight. With current estimates of HIV or hepatitis C viral (HCV) transmission approaching one in 2000000 units transfused, keeping to a minimum bacterial contamination of platelet products (one in 2000) and errors in transfusion, with its estimated one in 800000 mortality rate, assume great urgency. Finally, serious difficulties in blood safety and availability for poor, developing countries require innovative strategies and commitment of resources.
View details for Web of Science ID 000180428000026
View details for PubMedID 12531595