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Cross match / group & hold

Cross match / group & hold

When samples for Cross Match or Group and Hold are collected the NZ Blood Service form must also be filled out and specific labelling requirements adhered to.

We recommend referring the patient to a Canterbury SCL blood collection centre where our staff are trained in these procedures.

Blood samples for pre-transfusion testing (Group and Hold or Cross Matching) should be taken no longer than 72 hours before the transfusion may be given (see table below for exceptions). 

It is therefore crucial that any relevant information about transfusion or recent or current pregnancy is made available on the Canterbury SCL request form. 

Please note: “group and Rh” is a request for a blood group only and this sample cannot be used for cross matching. 

If transfusion is or may be needed, this should be requested in writing, as “Group & Hold” or “Cross Match n units” with a time and date.

If in doubt about the requirements, contact Blood Bank via the DHB switchboard.

Pre-transfusion testing guidelines

Clinical DetailsSample Validity
No history of transfusion or pregnancy within the last 3 months and this is expressly stated on the request form7 days
When a longer period is needed (for example when the timing of surgery is uncertain) and this is expressly requested at the time
and No history of transfusion or pregnancy within the last 3 months and this is expressly stated on the request form
21 days
All other cases or if no history is provided72 hours