Transfusion Practitioner

The role of Transfusion Practitioner (TP) can vary from place to place, and from day to day, so this is not a definitive description of the role, but is designed to give you a flavour of what a Transfusion Practitioner does.

The role of TP provides a link between the transfusion laboratory and the clinical services. TPs can come from a nursing or biomedical science background, and as such they are usually a Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) registered nurse or Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) registered Biomedical Scientist. The job can involve interacting with many different health care professionals, but not necessarily in any one clinical area, so interpersonal and problem-solving skills are also important.  TPs are required to view issues from different perspectives to find the best way to improve processes or resolve problems.  They may also be required to work across multiple sites so there may be some travel involved.

There is plenty of hands-on work, from directly training and supporting staff, ensuring laboratories comply with regulations, and investigating incidents’ or errors and ensuring that they are learned from. They may have contact with patients, supporting them through the transfusion process and explaining each stage. Blood transfusion is a highly regulated field to ensure patient safety, so they may also need to be involved in audits on a local or national level, to ensure that the transfusion service they are part of is running safely and efficiently. This might include acting on the findings of an audit to improve the service. TPs might also be involved in identifying specific patient needs and introducing new services accordingly.

It also involves a certain degree of paperwork as TPs will be involved in documentation, compliance, staff training to ensure competency, writing protocols and transfusion policies and so on. They might be required to deliver practical training or lectures to individuals or small groups, and attend meetings of hospital transfusion committees or transfusion teams.