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Transfus Med Rev. 2005 Jan;19(1):66-78.

The cost of blood: multidisciplinary consensus conference for a standard methodology.

[No authors listed]


Prior attempts to account for the cost of blood have varied in economic perspective, methodology, and scope and may have underestimated both direct and indirect costs associated with transfusions. To devise a comprehensive and standardized methodology for the United States that will improve upon existing estimates, a panel of experts in blood banking and transfusion medicine was assembled and participated in consensus deliberations using modified Delphi methods. As a first step, a process-flow model that describes all the major steps involved in collecting, processing, and transfusing blood such as donor recruitment and follow-up of transfusion sequelae was constructed. Next, interdependencies were outlined and detailed cost elements within each step were itemized. The relative importance of each element was rated. Personnel, screening for infectious agents, information systems, laboratory evaluations, management of transfusion reactions, and equipment were ranked as the most important factors to capture but, in an effort to be all-inclusive, even minor elements were included. This consensus model is broad-based and should serve societal, provider, and payer perspectives for future cost studies. Recognizing the limitations of process-flow models, the next iteration will use an activity-based approach to more fully account for the cost of blood than present estimates.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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