Date of release: 6 November 2020
Continuing our focus on National Pathology Week, we turn the spotlight to the Blood Bank. Mike Herbert, Blood Transfusion Discipline Lead, Black Country Pathology Services, tells us about the Blood Bank and the importance of the service it provides.
What makes your specialism important?
“The blood bank provides a diagnostic and therapeutic service,” said Mike.
“The diagnostic screening service for blood grouping and antibody screening (two to three per cent of people have unusual antibodies) is important for the preparation of therapeutic products for patients who are at risk of bleeding or are on cancer treatments, as well as for all pregnant women at risk of antibodies affecting their pregnancy.”
Why did you opt to follow a path in the Blood Bank?
“At school I was always fascinated by science and when the opportunity became available to work in a scientific healthcare setting there was no hesitation,” added Mike.
“Working in blood there is more patient care interface and knowing that what we do can have life-altering outcomes is so rewarding.”
Why is National Pathology Week important?
“Without an awareness of how important it is to provide support to clinicians, there is a risk this fantastic career pathway may get overlooked,” insisted Mike.
“I am amazed at how far diagnostics have move forward in the last 20 years and how projects such as the human genome (mapping the genes in the body to see if certain genes are present which can cause disease eg. p51 gene and breast cancer) have inspired so many people.”