Traceability and unique identifiers

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Abstract

Critical to patient safety is the capability of rapidly tracing a medical product of human origin (MPHO) from donor to recipient and vice versa. Traceability requires that each product be uniquely identified in order to provide a clear, unambiguous path between donor and recipient. While historically an identifier was unique only to the facility that assigned it, it is becoming increasingly important that such identifiers be unique globally because some MPHO, especially cells and tissues, are distributed across national borders. This requires a coding system that supports the assignment of internationally unique identifiers. ISBT 128 is the terminology, coding and labelling system used by facilities across to world to ensure traceability. It is managed by ICCBBA, a non-governmental organization in official relations with the World Health Organization.

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