Managing products with short expiry dates

Some blood components, such as platelets, have very short shelf-lives.

Occasionally with red cells and more frequently with platelets, you may receive units with a short remaining expiry.

If you receive products with a short expiry, you should:

  • Review your stock and ensure products with a short expiry are used first

  • Review blood components, especially platelets, which are already allocated to a patient. If necessary, bring back pre-allocated units with a longer expiry and instead issue units with a short expiry

  • If it appears you are not going to be able to use your stock of short expiry products, contact your nearest large hospital transfusion laboratory and ask if they can use them. You will need to confirm their packing requirements and arrange transport if required.