Blood spot sample takers: have you ever wondered why sample quality is so important?
The simple answer is that a poor quality sample could mean that a baby with a serious condition is missed.
Newborn blood spot screening identifies babies at increased risk of having one of 9 rare but serious conditions. They can then be seen and treated early if needed. The treatment can be life-saving for some of these babies.
We’ve launched a new e-learning module on blood spot samples that explains what could happen if a baby has a poor quality sample. For example, if the sample did not have the correct amount of blood, was contaminated or taken at the wrong time.
The new e-learning takes you on a sample-taking journey, giving practical tips on what to do before, during and after taking a sample.
An animation explains (in a non-technical way) how the laboratory looks at blood spot samples as 3-dimensional objects to make sure they contain the right amount of blood.
There are also illustrations of different types of poor quality samples, including some real images from a laboratory to download and keep as a resource.
We’ve included videos from previous e-learning in which:
- a midwife describes how she improved her practice
- we take a look at what happens when samples reach the laboratory
There are reminders throughout of where to go for further information, including e-learning modules on the new blood spot card and the 9 conditions.
A huge thanks to the e-Learning for Healthcare team at Health Education England for helping us to develop this new module – they had great ideas and really helped to bring it to life.
We’d welcome any feedback on the new e-learning, so please do take a moment to complete the survey at the end if you get a chance.
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