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Thread: Blood collection competency

  1. #1
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    Blood collection competency

    Consideration is being given in our Health Board to changing to a one-off competency assessment for blood collection which need not be repeated if there is ongoing satisfactory performance. Assessment would be repeated if there is a period of greater than one year out of a workplace where transfusion routinely takes place or if an individual has been involved in a collection adverse event. Would this be considered as satisfactory in meeting the requirements of the UK Blood Safety and Quality Regulations - in particular question F11 of the annual compliance report 'what is the frequency of re-certification for blood collection?'


  2. #2
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    I think the good practice guidelines say competency should be evaluated frequently. I guess you need to risk Assess your proposed frequency and be clear in the justification to change. you considered what needs to happen if you change the collection process in that year.. you only mention adverse incident or absence. How are you going to manage sites where transfusion does happen but not a lot? Increase frequency ?

  3. #3
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    I would be very hesitent here. How do you measure ongoing stairs factory performance? Do you have a tracking system? You would need to audit resguarly to do this and in my experience this is one of those areas understandably where the inspectors want to see we have it under control. Is the reason for this change the volume of staff requiring retraining? If the staff numbers are an issue then it is worth considering defining which staff actually need to collect blood, and link it them and remove the rest. One of e the DGH’s I work with only allows porters, clinic nurses and theatre HCA’s to collect and this work very well as the process is very well designed.

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the previous posts. These are all valid points for consideration. My understanding is that NHS England has introduced a single observational assessment for collection competency. All Staff are still required to undertake a theoretical test via either e-learning or paper assessment. However following an individual’s initial training, and one off practical competency assessment, the observation practical assessment is not be repeated if there is on-going satisfactory performance. Have Health Boards adopted this policy i.e. one off practical assessment and if so has anyone had feedback from MHRA?

  5. #5
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    As a general rule, as an inspector, I would normally expect to see some level of periodic reassessment, in this case, around every 2 years or so.
    This will need to be based on risk and is dependent somewhat on the systems you have to control collections and detect failures. Less control or low failure detection = more frequent assessment.
    I would be interested in understanding the documented rationale for extended periods without competency assessment during inspection.
    Ask yourself, how detectable and how serious could a failure be?
    Do you review this as part of self-inspection, and how often?
    What about those trained and assessed, not distributing components for an extensive period, say >3 months and thus becoming unfamiliar with the process. Is their initial competency assessment still valid after such a period, and if so why?
    What measures do you have in place to control those collecting components? If you have a fully automated system which disables individuals access cards after a period of inactivity (say 3 months), the risk is probably reduced, but what about manual systems where such functionality is not available?
    There is no hard and fast answer to the above, and it depends on the risks, which will be different at each site.

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