History of Patient Blood Management

"Bloodless medicine", completely avoiding the use of blood, has often been linked to the Jehovah’s Witness religious beliefs (described as early as 1927). More recently, patient blood management, decreasing but not necessarily excluding blood transfusion, has been applied to many patient populations.

Justice Horace Krever’s Commission Report (1997) on Canada’s blood system recommended that patients be made aware of the benefits, risks and alternatives to blood transfusion. The report also stated that the discussions take place with language the patient can understand and occur well before an operation so that the patient can be part of the decision-making. Krever identified patient blood management programs as a means to improve patient care.

Even though AIDS and hepatitis are no longer the major risks of blood transfusions, patient blood management programs benefit patients.

In 2002 the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care sponsored ONTraC (Ontario Transfusion Coordinators), a program where patient blood management programs were started in 23 hospitals. London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) was chosen as one of those hospitals. LHSC's Perioperative Patient Blood Management Program (PPBMP) of today has grown from that beginning.