General FAQs

1

Why do I need to be licensed by ICCBBA?

2

Why must I pay to use ISBT 128?

3

Who is using ISBT 128?

4

What benefits would facilities see after implementing ISBT 128?

General Frequently Asked Questions

1

Why do I need to be licensed by ICCBBA?

 

Licensed status allows access to password-protected areas of the ICCBBA website and grants the right to use ISBT 128 data structures and the ISBT 128 number(s) beginning with the assigned Facility Identification Number (FIN) on blood products, cellular therapy products, tissues, and other Medical Products of Human Origin (MPHO).

 

2

Why must I pay to use ISBT 128?

 

In order to maintain and enhance the ISBT 128 Standard so it continues to meet the needs of its users, it must be professionally managed. Of particular importance are the following:

  • stability – users must be confident that a standard is stable for the period of time that it is required (EC requires data to be stored and traceable for 30 years);
  • user focus – the user community are the experts in their field and the information standard needs to meet, rather than dictate, their needs;
  • flexibility – as clinical and scientific knowledge grows there is rapid development with changing information needs. The standard must be flexible enough to accommodate these needs;
  • responsiveness – with a rapidly developing field the standard needs to be able to respond to user needs in a timely manner;
  • globalization – there is a need for a truly international standard with endorsement worldwide;
  • implementation – a standard is only of value if it is widely used;
  • compatibility – standards do not work in isolation but need to interface with equipment, software and other standards. 

 

Clearly meeting these needs will have a cost. Stability and flexibility requires a robust organization that can manage the development and maintenance of the standard, and one that is not overly dependent on key personnel.

 

To support its activities ICCBBA charges a license fee for the use of the ISBT 128 Standard. As a tax-exempt, non-profit organization all of this income is directed to achieving the ICCBBA mission: “to enhance safety for patients by managing the ISBT 128 international information standard for use in transfusion and transplantation.”

 

3

Who is using ISBT 128?

 

ISBT 128 has been implemented in many countries. We maintain a map of all the countries that have implemented ISBT 128 and those who have registered with ICCBBA.

 

4

What benefits would facilities see after implementing ISBT 128?

 

ISBT 128 offers immediate benefits to your organization as well as the ongoing benefits of achieving greater safety, accuracy, and efficiency in your service delivery. Core benefits include:

  • The entire Donation Identification Number (which includes the facility identification) is encoded in a single bar code
  • No duplication worldwide of a Donation Identification Number in 100 years
  • Fewer system and identification errors
  • Fewer misreads on automated instruments
  • More specific identification of products and the ability to use the same codes for billing products as those used on the component label
  • Ability to bar code the expiration time
  • No tracking and renumbering problems when blood is imported from another facility when the unit number is not in the same format as that used by the blood center's computer system
  • Other long term benefits include the ability to build in more process controls and continue to use the same data structures whether using bar codes or radio frequency tags (or other new technology)
  • The efficiency and ease-of-use benefits that the grocery industry has seen with bar code standardization that results in lower operating costs 

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