About Transfusion Evidence Library


The Transfusion Evidence Library is an information resource that provides access to evidence-based publications (systematic reviews, randomised controlled trials and health economic evaluations) on all aspects of transfusion medicine, with easy-to-read PICO summaries on selected studies.

  • Produced by NHS Blood and Transplant’s Systematic Review Initiative.
  • Funded by the four UK Blood Services and the Oxford Biomedical Research Centre.
  • Available free of charge worldwide.
  • Articles are pre-selected for clinical relevance and methodological quality, with a digest of the top ten papers produced each month, the Transfusion Evidence Alert.

The Transfusion Evidence Library is a database of systematic reviews (since 1980) and randomised controlled trials (since 1950) relevant to transfusion medicine.

It is fully searchable, updated monthly and aims to be a key resource for medical practitioners, policy makers and researchers both in the UK and around the world. The Library is produced by the Systematic Review Initiative, supported by the UK Blood Services.

Areas Covered

  • Blood donors and donation practice
  • Fractionated blood products
  • Management of anaemia
  • Red cells, platelets, FFP, granulocytes, cryoprecipitate, whole blood
  • Transfusion adverse events
  • Transfusion alternatives
  • Therapeutic apheresis
  • Gene therapy

Using the Library

Learn how to effectively use the Transfusion Evidence Library by using the following resources:

Cochrane Collaboration

The Cochrane Collaboration has officially endorsed the database, recognizing it as a “unique, evidence-based resource for the transfusion medicine community”.

The Systematic Review Initiative

The Transfusion Evidence Library is produced by the Systematic Review Initiative (SRI), a clinical research group established by NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) in 2001 and funded through the four UK Blood Services (please see below). It is based within NHSBT's Oxford Blood Centre at the John Radcliffe Hospital and has developed close links with both the hospital and the University of Oxford.

The primary objective of the SRI is to “develop the evidence base for the practice of transfusion medicine”. So far, we have completed more than 100 systematic reviews in the transfusion field and have undertaken several other evidence-based medicine research projects, including overviews of the use of red blood cells and fresh frozen plasma. Alongside producing systematic reviews, other core activities of the group include producing the Transfusion Evidence Library, collaborating with ISBT to produce the Transfusion Evidence Round-Up, and producing Stem Cell Evidence, a library of high quality evidence in the field of haematopoietic stem cell transplantation.

The core SRI team comprises transfusion medicine/haematology clinicians, information specialists and clinical researchers. It is supported by an independent steering committee consisting of representatives from relevant professional bodies and clinical experts from the UK and North America. This committee helps the SRI to identify topics and priorities for new systematic reviews and for the Transfusion Evidence Library.

SRI and ISBT Collaboration

The SRI is collaborating with the International Society of Blood Transfusion (ISBT) to create the quarterly Transfusion Evidence Round-Up. This highlights high quality evidence studies about an internationally relevant subject in the field of Transfusion Medicine. All references featured in the Transfusion Evidence Round-Up are selected by ISBT members and drawn from the Transfusion Evidence Library and, where relevant, Stem Cell Evidence.

Our Funders: UK Blood Services

NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) is a joint England and Wales Special Health Authority. Its remit includes the provision of a reliable, efficient supply of blood and associated services to the NHS in England and North Wales. It is also the organ donor organisation for the UK and is responsible for matching and allocating donated organs.

The Northern Ireland Blood Transfusion Service is a Special Agency of the Health and Social Care Service for Northern Ireland. Its core function is the provision of blood and blood components to meet the needs of patients in Northern Ireland and to the highest quality and safety specifications.

The Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service, a strategic business unit of NHS National Services Scotland, is the specialist provider of transfusion medicine in Scotland, supplying high quality blood, tissues, cells and services. Working with communities, hospitals and professionals to ensure that the donor's gift is used wisely and effectively for the benefit of patients, its key priority is to ensure that NHS Scotland has enough blood to meet the transfusion needs of patients in Scotland.

The Welsh Blood Service (WBS) is a division of the Velindre NHS Trust. Its remit is to provide and manage services relating to the collection, screening and processing of blood and its constituents and to the preparation and supply of blood, plasma and other blood products. The WBS also operates a stem cell donor registry and NEQAS (H&I).