Adverse reactions reporting

According to CSA standards, hospitals are required to report to Canadian Blood Services adverse events following transfusion if they are thought to be caused by a deficiency of the blood product. Hospitals also report adverse events following transfusion either voluntarily through TTISS or as required by Health Canada.

How to report adverse transfusion events

To facilitate reporting of adverse transfusion events, we have prepared A Guide to Reporting Adverse Transfusion Events, which includes links where reporting forms can be found.

Which adverse transfusion events are reported to Canadian Blood Services

The adverse transfusion events data reported to Canadian Blood Services are summarized in the interactive graphs below. It is important to note that only data pertaining to adverse events related to the transfusion procedure are included in these graphs. Adverse events reported to Canadian Blood Services that are later found to be unrelated to the transfusion procedure, and rather to the underlying medical condition of the patient and thus co-incidental, are not included.

Ongoing education with hospital health-care professionals promotes the appropriate reporting of transfusion reactions related to Canadian Blood Services’ products. Those efforts have led to a reduction in the number of adverse transfusion events reported to Canadian Blood Services that are related to the patient’s underlying condition (e.g., TACO or febrile reactions) rather than to the product.  

Adverse event reports received by Canadian Blood Services may be revised as additional information becomes available. Therefore, the numbers reported for a given year may be subject to change, as a result of the receipt of revised information.

The adverse transfusion events data shared by Canadian Blood Services are meant to supplement rather than replace the official reporting that comes from the TTISS program.

Total adverse events reported to Canadian Blood Services

Adverse events reported to Canadian Blood Services by categories

"Other" category includes transfusion adverse events ultimately found to be related to the patient’s underlying condition and not due to the transfused blood component.

Details of "other" adverse events reported to Canadian Blood Services

"Other" category includes transfusion adverse events ultimately found to be related to the patient’s underlying condition and not due to the transfused blood component.

Fatalities reported to Canadian Blood Services by category

"Other" category includes transfusion adverse events ultimately found to be related to the patient’s underlying condition and not due to the transfused blood component. 2015: 2/2 fatalities are undetermined to be related to a transfusion event. 2014: 1/4 fatalities is undetermined to be related to a transfusion event.