16 January 2018
Jersey’s blood donation service is being temporarily suspended from the start of February while changes are made to ensure compliance with updated EU standards. This will include moving to a new location.
The service will be suspended for between three and four months, however Islanders who need blood, and those who generously give it, are being assured that blood stocks during this time will be readily available using supplies from England.
The decision has been taken as the Jersey Blood Transfusion Service (JBTS) is due to be re-licensed by the Minister for Health and Social Services – this occurs every five years. With EU standards having been updated since the previous re-licensing, the existing location no longer meets best practice and needs to be improved, along with some updating of logistics and documentation.
Adrian O’Keeffe, Pathology Manager for the Health and Social Services Department, said “We are currently working on a plan to improve the Island’s arrangements for blood donation. The current premises have become unsuitable as they are in an older part of the hospital with penetrating damp. The best way for us to handle the move is to stop taking donations for a short period.
“We will source our blood supply from England during that time, which will be planned and confirmed in advance to ensure stock levels are more than adequate.
“Getting our blood supply from the NHS in England is an established route both for specialist blood components and as a back-up plan for emergencies.
“We expect to be back up and running in the spring, and very much hope that our regular donors will resume their donations in our new home – their commitment is very much appreciated.”