WHO Collaborating Center for Research and Training on Blood Safety

WHO Collaborating Center for Research & Training on Blood Safety

Iranian Blood Transfusion Organization and High Institute of Research & Education in Transfusion Medicine have been designated as WHO Collaborating Center for Research & Training on Blood Safety for a period of four years started from 1 September 2013.

During the period of designation, High Institute of Research & Education in Transfusion Medicine will contribute to the implementation of WHO policies and guidelines on blood safety in the region and support WHO policies by organizing and holding training courses, workshops and conferences for other countries in EMR.

Proposed Activities (2013-2017)

  • Holding Short-term Training Courses on Antibody Screening for regional countries;

IBTO held a three-day workshop on “Pre - Transfusion Antibody Screening" for clinical laboratory experts of six Member States of Eastern Mediterranean Region (EMR) from 18 to 20 September 2014. Participants from Iraq, Oman, Egypt, Afghanistan, Sudan and Turkey attended the workshop.

  • Conducting External Quality Control Assessment Programs for EMRO member states;

The 30 samples (10 for HBsAg, 10 for Anti-HCV and 10 for Anti-HIV) were prepared and sent to Yemen, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Sudan and Tunisia during the last week of September 2014. The interpretations of results were compared with relevant reference results in IBTO in February 2015 and distributed to the participating countries. 

WHOCC announced its readiness to conduct the second run of activity to all EMR countries in 2016. Afghanistan and Sudan, Pakistan, Tunis and Oman have participated in the project. The samples were sent in October, 2016.

  • —A regional seminar on "Optimizing using of blood and blood components"

The 3rd International Congress of Transfusion Medicine was held in Tehran during 15-17 December 2015, focusing on the theme of evidence-based use of blood and blood components. More than 600 participants from 16 different countries attended the event.

  • Workshop on “Promoting Voluntary Blood Donation” for EMR member states;

The two-day workshop was conducted at Iranian Blood Transfusion Organization (IBTO) headquarters during 18-19 December 2015 and attracted participants from Sudan, Pakistan, Tajikistan and Afghanistan.

  • Cooperate with WHO in establishing regional database on blood safety for EMR member states;

In 2014, The draft questionnaire was prepared and was sent to WHOCC responsible officer (Dr. Humayum  Asghar) for necessary revisions. In a joint meeting held between IBTO and Dr. Asghar on 22 July 2014, he agreed to inform IBTO on how to implement this project.

In 2016, following to the visit of Dr. Yetmgeta Abdella, EMRO Medical Officer for Blood and Transfusion Safety, IBTO agreed to cooperate with EMRO in order to provide an annual report on the status of blood safety in the region based on Global Database on Blood Safety (GDBS) questionnaire.

In March 2016, a team from IBTO was assigned to analyze, validate and draft the report based on the raw data sent by EMRO. The complete draft was sent to EMRO by July, 2016 after some revision by both parties. The report gives a general view on the safety and availability of blood and blood components in EMR in 2013.

Additionally, IBTO in collaboration with EMRO performs an extensive literature review on peer reviewed publications from the countries in the Region over the past ten years. The purpose of this research is to gain information on the applied scientific research as an indicator for progress and improvement. The review will be published by the end of 2016.

  • Training of Trainers (TOT) Workshop on GMP in Blood Transfusion Services

(To be held in 2017)