Alison Ridyard BSVC, DSAM, DipECVM-CA, MRCVS, senior lecturer in Small Animal Internal Medicine at The Royal (Dick) Small Animal Hospital, Edinburgh contacted Labcold about the safe temperature controlled storage of canine red blood cells and plasma .
The Hospital for Small Animals (HfSA) principally deals with cases referred from Scotland and the north of England, although some come from much further afield. Disciplines covered include orthopaedic and soft tissue surgery, internal medicine (canine and feline) plus cardiopulmonary, oncology and dermatology services. Increasingly, patients are referred for advanced diagnostic imaging and diagnosis which is aided by ready access to clinical pathology facilities within their on-site Veterinary Pathology Unit. HfSA also houses a busy first-opinion canine/feline practice and an Exotic and Wildlife Service dealing with both first and second opinion cases. The Hospital supports teaching and research through income generation and supply of clinical material; it has an annual turnover of around £3 million.
The regulations for the storage of animal blood is not as rigorous as for human blood, however this prestigious institution decided they required canine blood to be stored with the same rigour currently used to store human blood in the UK.
Following a series of consultations with Claire Cossar of Labcold they purchased a small blood bank refrigerator and plasma freezer. Like the rest of the Labcold blood product storage range, these cabinets are certified medical devices in accordance with Directive 93/42/EEC; which supersedes BS4376:Part 1:1991. They are built in the UK and can be supported by preventative maintenance contracts.
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