There is the potential for an increased demand of blood components, driven by the ageing population and new therapies in cancer, transplantation and other fields of medicine which is further exacerbated by the significant number of inappropriate and unnecessary transfusions taking place.

The 2011 NHS Blood and Transplant Commercial Review identified that “More work should be done to support trusts in achieving and maintaining best practice, to reduce the inappropriate use of red cells, platelets and fresh frozen plasma; this would improve patient care and reduce costs to trusts and would in turn reduce demand and direct costs on NHSBT”.