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Red Cells


For further information please see the Calgary Zone Guidelines for Transfusion.

Pretransfusion Testing Requirements

  • Testing must be performed within four days of intended transfusion (see exceptions in Specimen Outdate).
  • The patient's ABO must be confirmed in order for ABO-specific units to be dispensed. TM will advise of the need to perform additional testing. In the absence of confirmation of the patient's ABO, a second sample collection is required. Group O units will be dispensed in emergency situations only.
  • Transfusion of crossmatched red cells is preferred. In situations where units are urgently required, uncrossmatched units may be ordered. See Emergency Transfusion.   
  • For further information please see Ordering Pretransfusion Testing and Regional Transfusion Service Identification System (RTSIS).


As required at all sites.


Order with specific attributes (irradiation, etc.) when appropriate.

See Specialized Blood Component Eligibility.


Additional time may be required to provide for special attributes. Only Group O irradiated red cells will be provided for transfusion to neonates (4 months or younger)