Communication on Supply Disruption of Blood Tubes

As per previous communications, Becton Dickinson has alerted us to a shortage of products from their Blood Specimen Collection Portfolio that is impacting across most main blood tube supplies. The supply position remains constrained and is forecasted to become even more constrained over the coming weeks. While it is anticipated that the position will improve from the middle of September, overall supply is likely to remain challenging for a significant period. This communication aims to provide local information on how are implementing the most recent national guidance.

We appreciate that this temporary position is frustrating for patients and services alike. These measures are proportionate to the challenge presented by this supply constraint and immediate implementation of this guidance is required.

Primary care provided phlebotomy

In line with national guidance, all phlebotomy provided by General Practice (e.g. North Derbyshire, Chesterfield and some Staffordshire practices) will need to be cancelled, other than that which is clinically urgent (see below).

If phlebotomy has been requested by the hospital, then the hospital clinician, as the requesting clinician, will need to review and rebook with the practice as appropriate.

Examples of clinically urgent testing include:

  • Bloods that are required to facilitate a two week wait referral
  • Bloods that are extremely overdue and/or essential for safe prescribing of medication or monitoring of condition
  • Bloods that if taken could avoid a hospital admission or prevent an onward referral
  • Those with suspected sepsis or conditions with a risk of death or disability