Transfusion transmitted infection due to unsafe blood donation is a Major health hazard, Fortis Escorts Hospital Jaipur, initiated to use the latest technology Nucleic Acid Amplification Testing which enables stringent screening of blood sample to reduce the risk of transmitted infections.
Blood banks usually use the enzyme linked immunosorbent assay or ELISA to test for HIV and Hepatitis B & C virus among other infections. Fortis Jaipur adopted NAT technology for an additional layer of safety. NAT technology helps detect very low level of Viral RNA/DNA that may be present in donated blood which could be missed on serology testing. NAT test is most effective screening procedure to ensure that the blood is virus free.
Dr Himanshu Sharma, Additional Director, Blood Bank, Fortis Escorts Hospital Jaipur Told that blood transfusion is a significant aspect of patient’s management, complication in transfusion may lead to transfusion transmitted infections(TTIs)people receiving blood. HIV, HBV & HCV are the great concern because of their prolonged viremia and carrier or latent state. Not only these infections associated with long term morbidity but also there is a grave risk of transmission of these infections to others. It is necessary to monitor the trend in the prevalence of TTI so as to assess the risk of TTIs in our pool of donors and by inference the risk in general population receiving such blood.
Virus have window period to develop, window period is a time between potential exposure to virus infection and point when the test gives an accurate result. During the window period a person can be infected but still the test will be negative. For HIV, the window period is around 28 days,56-60 days for Hepatitis B & 126-150 days for Hepatitis C. since the NAT technique is based on amplification of targeted regions of Viral RNA & DNA, it detects them earlier than the other screening methods thus narrowing the window period of HIV, HBV and Hepatitis C viral infection.
Mr. Prateem Tamboli Zonal Director, Fortis Escorts Hospital, Jaipur said that Fortis is always keen to adopt latest technology for better clinical outcomes, although it is not compulsory to have NAT test we have been adopted this advanced screening method to avoid transfusion infection. Every year thousands of people reported to have been infected with HIV from blood transfusion. We are creating awareness for Blood transfusion safety to avoid TTIs and we believe that NAT testing is going to play a significant role to provide virus free blood to receivers.
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