Information for researchers

This section aims to provide more detailed information about the study design for researchers. More information, including the study protocol, is available on the NIHR website.

 

Objectivespatient icon

 

  1. To estimate the cost-effectiveness of alternative minimum inter-donation intervals between whole-blood donations.
  2. To investigate the frequency with which donors are willing to donate whole-blood according to alternative future changes to the blood collection service.
  3. To estimate the cost-effectiveness of alternative strategies for maintaining the supply of whole-blood to the NHS.

 

Methods

The HEMO study includes two surveys designed to investigate donors’ willingness to donate whole-blood under future changes to the blood collection service:

1) A Stated Preference Survey of donors who both did and did not participate in the INTERVAL study

2) A Discrete Choice Experiment of donors who did participate in the INTERVAL study.

The surveys provide new evidence about donors’ preferences from the Discrete Choice Experiment as well as their predicted donation frequency from the stated preference questions, both in response to possible future changes to fixed blood collection centres which is of prime policy interest to NHSBT. For example, the survey will allow us to estimate donors’ relative preferences for shorter minimum intervals between blood collection, versus changes to opening hours at fixed donor centres.

We will compare the costs and consequences of strategies to reduce the minimum interval between blood donations with alternative changes to the blood collection service. INTERVAL study data will be used to populate the cost consequence analysis, to estimate the effect of different minimum inter-donation intervals on the frequency of attending a whole-blood donation session, donors’ quality of life, and costs. The cost consequence analysis will also incorporate the findings from both surveys, together with data from the INTERVAL study and PULSE, the national donor register, to predict the costs and consequences of alternative blood collection strategies. We will report the relative costs and consequences of alternative changes to the blood service, overall and for donor subgroups, for example according to gender, age, and blood type.

 

The potential strategies being investigated

clock iconExtending the opening times at blood collection centres

Providing a health report to donors after each donationclipboard icon

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Changing the number of times that donors are allowed to give blood each year, if it is safe to do so (for more information on this strategy please see the INTERVAL study website)

 

Outcomes and outputs

The Cost Effectiveness Analysis will report the impact on the cost per unit of whole-blood donated for reduced inter-donation intervals over two years. The Stated Preference Survey and Discrete Choice Experiment will report the probability of future whole-blood donation with reduced inter-donation intervals, and other future possible changes to the blood collection service. The Cost Effectiveness Analysis will report the impact on the cost per unit of whole-blood donated associated with a range of potential changes to the blood collection service.

We will recommend which of the investigated strategies are relatively most cost-effective overall, and for donor subgroups (for example, by gender, age or blood type).

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