Safe blood transfusion, called for

Dr Srinivasa Murthy

As part of spreading awareness towards reducing HIV/AIDS infections, Dhanawantari Blood Bank, Rajahmundry conducted a conference in the city on the eve of World AIDS Day on Wednesday.

The members discussed the significance of NAT (Nucleic Acid Amplification Technology) PCR-tested blood to reduce the risk of Transfusion Transmitted Infections (TTIs) like HIV during blood transfer. 

Dhanawantari Blood Bank, Rajahmundry advocates need for NAT PCR tested blood to reduce spread of HIV infections 

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Dr Srinivasa Murthy of the Blood Bank said, “It is a healthcare priority to address the issue of HIV and other TTIs, across India. 

One step that can prevent spread of deadly infections like HIV is by screening all donated blood through NAT PCR, prior to transfusion. 

At Dhanwantari Blood Bank, since we installed NAT PCR in 2012, we have detected 29 cases, which would otherwise have gone undetected. This translates to saving 87 of lives from infections like HIV, Hepatitis B & Hepatitis C as every unit of blood can serve three people when broken up into components.”

“A single ELISA test as recommended by NACO may not give 100 per cent safe blood.  Combination of ELISA and NAT gives 99.99 per cent safety from Transfusion Transmitted Infections,” he said.

Elaborating on its signficane, Dr Murthy said, “NAT PCR provides an additional layer of safety to blood recipients. It helps detect low levels of viral RNA or DNA that may be present in donated blood, which could be missed on serology testing. 

Transfusion without proper screening for deadly infections can cause more harm than benefit to patients receiving them.” 

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