How long before blood transfusion can patient informed consent be obtained?
An RN from a medical center in Southern California asks how long before a transfusion is given can the patient's consent be obtained? Her facility hopes to increase compliance with documentation of informed consent for blood products by having physicians obtain patient signatures during pre-op office visits. Since elective surgeries are sometimes scheduled 30-60 days in advance, would getting the blood consent signed at this time be valid?
The following comments have been received.
ADDENDA June 1, 2012
- At an academic center in Los Angeles, transfusion consent is obtained for each hospital admission or at least once per year for outpatients.
- A blood bank director in northern California notes that it is reasonable to obtain the informed consent for blood transfusion in advance at the same time the surgical consent is obtained. The risk/benefits and alternatives to transfusion are often discussed during the same visit as the risks and benefits of surgery.
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