Pathogen reduction (PR) of selected blood components is a technology that has been adopted in practice in various ways. Although they offer great advantages in improving the safety of the blood supply, these technologies have limitations which hinder their broader use, e.g. increased costs. In this context, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), in co-operation with the Italian National Blood Centre, organised an expert consultation meeting to discuss the potential role of pathogen reduction technologies (PRT) as a blood safety intervention during outbreaks of infectious diseases for which (in most cases) laboratory screening of blood donations is not available. The meeting brought together 26 experts and representatives of national competent authorities for blood from thirteen European Union and European Economic Area (EU/EEA) Member States (MS), Switzerland, the World Health Organization, the European Directorate for the Quality of Medicines and Health Care of the Council of Europe, the US Food and Drug Administration, and the ECDC. During the meeting, the current use of PRTs in the EU/EEA MS and Switzerland was verified, with particular reference to emerging infectious diseases (see Appendix). In this article, we also present expert discussions and a common view on the potential use of PRT as a part of both preparedness and response to threats posed to blood safety by outbreaks of infectious disease.
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