Expensive blood safety initiatives may offer less benefit than we think.

Kamper-Jorgensen M, Hjalgrim H, Edgren G, et al.
Transfusion 2009; Sep 16 [Epub ahead of print].
NATA Rating :
Review by : A. Maniatis
NATA Review

It is important to have accurate estimates of cost-effectiveness for any medical intervention. The article by Kamper-Jrgensen et al. is attempting a correction of previous estimates of the cost-effectiveness of blood transfusion. There is no doubt that estimating the cost per QALY gained for transfusion recipients is difficult, relying on models based on assumptions and empirical data.The authors point out that the cost-effectiveness per QALY gained varies significantly in the published estimates, some of which underestimate while others overestimate the cost. While the demand for zero risk in transfusion will continue to prevail, despite increasing costs, it is important for physicians to keep in mind this exhorbitant cost and to consider the use of transfusion alternatives instead.

– Alice Maniatis

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