PVC-free Blood Bag: A cooperation between industry and healthcare for a non-toxic life
Did you know currently used blood bags in healthcare might pose risks to your health? At this moment, no acceptable PVC-free blood bag for red blood cells is available on the market. Today’s bag is made of PVC (polyvinylchloride) and has up to 40 percent plasticizer to make it soft. The most commonly used plasticizer in blood bags is the phthalate DEHP, which is classified as a reproductive disruptor and is also forbidden in toys. The risks of DEHP are emphasized in the directive for medical devices. Demanding PVC-free blood bags means avoiding potential risks from new plasticizers, which is a precautionary act as the consequences of new plasticizers cannot be predicted. To this end, the project PVCfreebloodbag is being implemented.
The project objectives are:
• To show that it is possible to produce a PVC-free blood bag that fulfil requirement specification, including CE-labelling;
• To increase demand by cooperation with European health care by disseminating knowledge and awareness.
The core actions:
• Increased demand for PVC-free blood bags
• Production of compounds, film, tubes and PVC-free blood bags
• Evaluation of blood bags
• User test including economic feasibility
PVCfreebloodbag is a project within the EU’s Life+ Environmental Programme. It started in September 2011 and will end in March 2016. The four European companies participating in the project, Melitek A/S, Wipak Oy, Primo Profile and Haemotronic SpA, will work together to produce a PVC-free blood bag. Karolinska University Hospital is responsible for evaluating the bag. Jämtland County Council is in charge of the handling test of the bags.
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