Mandatory testing

Blood Service laboratories perform a range of tests on all donations for the following reasons:

  • To allow appropriate selection of blood for transfusion (eg, permitting ABO compatibility between donor and recipient)

  • To minimise or prevent adverse consequences of transfusion (eg, preventing transmission of infections in transfusion recipients)

  • To identify donors whose donations are not suitable for transfusion (eg, donors who carry transfusion-transmissible infections are notified and counselled).

Mandatory testing of fresh blood components for transfusion consists of:

  • ABO and RhD blood groups

  • Red cell antibody screening

  • Syphilis serology

  • Viral screening for:

    • Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) 1 and 2 antibodies and HIV 1 RNA

    • Hepatitis B Virus (HBV) surface antigen and HBV DNA

    • Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) antibodies and HCV RNA

    • Human T-cell lymphotropic virus (HTLV) 1 and 2 antibodies

All platelet donations are screened for bacterial contamination 24 hours post collection.

When required, additional donor testing is performed, including confirmatory testing, CMV screening and malarial antibody screening.

The Blood Service has strict guidelines and standard operating procedures for these tests which are all performed in TGA licensed facilities accredited for good laboratory and manufacturing practices.

We check test results before blood components are released for clinical use or further manufacture.

If a screening test for infectious disease is confirmed reactive, and the donation is destroyed, we notify and counsel the donor as part of Blood Service procedure.

Once donor selection criteria have been met, mandatory viral screening is non-reactive, blood grouping results have been confirmed, red cell antibody screening is complete and product quality is acceptable as per defined component specifications, components are labelled for release and made available in stock inventory.