Blood component storage temperature range

Blood components should be stored at temperatures in accordance with the requirements listed in the table below.

Failure to follow correct storage requirements may result in decreased transfusion efficacy and/or potential harm to the patient.
 

Storage temperature Shelf life Comments

2–6 ºC

Red cells: 42 days

All blood refrigerators, including theatre and other holding refrigerators, must comply with AS 3864.1, AS 3864.2 (1, 2)

Paediatric red cells: 35 days
Washed red cells: 28 days   
Storage temperature Shelf life Comments

20–24 ºC

5 days
                                          

Platelets components must be agitated gently and continuously in a single layer on a platelet agitator.                       

Storage temperature Shelf life Comments

At or below –25 ºC

12 months
                                          

Freezers must comply with AS 3864.1 & 3864.2 (1,2).                                                                                            

Storage temperature Shelf life Comments

As per product insert

As per expiry date on product
                                         

All blood refrigerators, including theatre and other holding refrigerators, must comply with AS 3864.1, AS 3864.2 (1, 2)

Key points

  • Keep handling of refrigerated components outside of refrigeration to a minimum to ensure that maximum temperature requirements are not exceeded

  • Red cell components must not exceed 30 minutes at room temperature on each occasion

  • Maintain components in a controlled temperature environment until administered

  • Handle and store components in a way that minimises the possibility of product tampering

  • Alarm set points should be set within 0.5 ºC of the storage temperature range

 

References
  1. Standards Australia on behalf of Committee HE-020. AS 3864.1-2012 Medical refrigeration equipment - For the storage of blood and blood products - Manufacturing requirements. NSW, 2012.
  2. Standards Australia on behalf of Committee HE-020. AS 3864.2-2012 Medical refrigeration equipment - For the storage of blood and blood products - User related requirements for care, maintenance, performance verification and calibration. NSW, 2012.