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St. Catharines Site recognized for its red blood cell stewardship

Posted Dec 20th, 2022

Niagara Health’s St. Catharines Site has been recognized as a Using Blood Wisely hospital.

This significant achievement is part of a national campaign by Choosing Wisely Canada and Canadian Blood Services that challenges hospitals to decrease unnecessary red blood cell transfusions. Using blood conservatively keeps supplies sustainable while lowering the risk of side effects to patients.

St. Catharines joins the Welland and Niagara Falls sites in reaching this benchmark. The three Niagara Health sites are among 78 Canadian hospitals and health authorities to earn this important recognition.

“The Using Blood Wisely designation is a symbol of Niagara Health’s commitment to achieving and maintaining the highest levels of red blood cell stewardship,” says Sonali Kohli, Niagara Health Vice-President of Diagnostics and Chief Information Officer. “We are proud to be among a select group of hospitals making a significant difference to patients, donors and Canada’s blood supply. This is an example of the extraordinary caring Niagara Health provides to our community.”

Achieving the Using Blood Wisely designation at the St. Catharines Site is the result of a multi-team quality improvement project focused on educating physicians about blood transfusion best practices. 

Enabling medical laboratory technologists to do real-time reviews of red blood cell orders to ensure they are appropriate has been the most vital change in practice.

Niagara Health’s Using Blood Wisely work can be included toward its goal of achieving Level 3 in the Choosing Wisely Canada Hospital Designation Program, a national certification for hospitals demonstrating a commitment to reducing unnecessary medical tests, treatments and procedures. Niagara Health currently holds a Level 2 certification.

Niagara Health System