FOR RELEASE: 8/2/2011Contact: John Cappiello, (203) 384-3637

Bridgeport Hospital taking part in international blood safety study

Bridgeport Hospital has been selected to take part in a seven-year international study to improve transfusion practices and outcomes for recipients of blood products.

The newly-established Recipient Epidemiology and Donor Evaluation Study (REDS-III) brings together leading researchers in the field of blood banking and transfusion medicine from throughout the United States and around the world, including Brazil, China and South Africa. The study is funded by the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Bridgeport Hospital is partnering with its fellow health system member Yale-New Haven Hospital and the Connecticut Region of the American Red Cross to form one of four domestic hubs for REDS-III. Each hub consists of a blood center and transfusion services that support at least two hospitals.

Pathologist Young Choi, MD, Medical Director of Transfusion Medicine, will lead Bridgeport Hospital’s role in the study.

“One integral element of the research will be the development of databases that collect information about donors, component processing and patients,” says Dr. Choi. “This information will help us study the factors that influence transfusion outcomes for patients and help improve those outcomes.”

In addition to Connecticut, other domestic hubs for the REDS-III study are in Milwaukee, Pittsburgh and San Francisco. More than $85 million has been approved by NIH to support the domestic and international activities of REDS-III. Over $10 million will be directed to the Bridgeport Hospital/Yale-New Haven Hospital/Red Cross hub, with at least $476,000 of this amount allocated to Bridgeport Hospital.

“With REDS-III being the leading NIH research program on blood safety and availability, we at Bridgeport Hospital are pleased to have been selected to take part,” Dr. Choi says. “Hopefully, our work will contribute to better practices and more effective patient care.”

For more information about the study, call Dr. Choi at 203-384-3157.

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Part of Yale New Haven Health System, Bridgeport Hospital is a 383-bed acute care hospital (plus 42 beds licensed to Yale-New Haven Children’s Hospital) serving parts of Fairfield and New Haven counties. The hospital admits more than 18,000 patients and receives more than 240,000 outpatient visits annually.