Access to enough safe blood in many low- and middle-income nations in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) does not meet patient care needs. Lack and delay of blood transfusion can cause harm to patients and slows the rate of progressive development of the health system. Recognizing the power of implementation science, the NHLBI initiated the BLOODSAFE Program, which supports three SSA-based study teams and one data coordinating center to improve access to safe blood transfusion in SSA. The educational session will include speakers from Ghana, Kenya, and Malawi study teams. The projects they will describe range from iron deficiency in blood donors to recruitment strategies of blood donors, including student blood donors and multidisciplinary community engagement activities. The BLOODSAFE program can improve access to safe blood in SSA, provide implementable strategies for others to use, and build research capacity in SSA.
Describe the status of blood transfusion systems in three African nations.
Recognize the importance of blood systems in health care systems in low and middle income nations.
Identify obstacles to access to safe blood transfusion over time and how implementation science approaches can support finding sustainable improvements.