Eahm2019 | Patient Blood Management

28th Congress of the European Association for hospital managers

Vifor Pharma Eahm 2019 Ghent Belgium


Vifor Pharma, which today has a presence in over one hundred countries, is a leading player in products to treat anaemia. Vifor Pharma is thus promoting Patient Blood Management (PBM) because it makes it improves patient outcomes and drives down costs. And the fact that the decision on whether to set up PBM rests largely with the hospital managers explains why it is so important for Vifor Pharma to attend the EAHM 2019 congress. We caught up with Jean-Christophe Goirand, Director Global Market Access Lead Patient Blood Management at Vifor Pharma, and Professor Axel Hofmann from the Universities of Zurich and Western Australia.

“Patient Blood Management (PBM) is a practice which is ten or so years old, is recommended by the WHO, and has been introduced in Australia, with tangible results. It then spread to the United States, and is now reaching Europe. And it is supported by the European Commission,” reports Jean-Christophe Goirand. “It sits at the centre of our added value, because PBM improves patient outcomes and drives down costs in hospitals.”

At the EAHM congress in Ghent, Professor Axel Hofmann, who specialises in the implementation of Patient Blood Management, will be coming to give us an explanation of this concept, which can play a key role in a hospital’s strategy. “PBM is built on three pillars: diagnosing and treating anaemia, minimising blood loss during surgery, and harnessing the physiological reserves of anaemia. This leads to massive reductions of blood transfusion and significant improvements of outcomes and overall treatment costs. PBM has also a positive effect on avoiding blood shortage. Without PBM, the demand for blood is likely to outstrip the supply due to accelerated population ageing, where the donor base is dwindling and the surgical case load is increasing.”

Patient-centred approach with huge benefits for the hospital

PBM is a multidisciplinary approach, centred on the patient, which can have a massive impact on patient safety, quality of care and hospital finances. PBM concerns on the one hand the clinicians (surgeons, anaesthetists, onco-haematologists, etc.) and on the other, the hospital managers. “Indeed, PBM impacts on key indicators of a hospital’s operation, such as mortality rates, infection rates, complication rates, readmission rates, and so on. Whether we are talking about orthopaedic surgery, cardiac surgery or oncology, there are many fields where PBM is going to improve these various parameters. This benefits the patient, the doctor and of course also the hospital management,” emphasises Professor Hofmann.

“When hospital managers have realised the positive impact of PBM for their institution, in general, they they are keen to adapt the hospital’s infrastructure to enable PBM. They reallocate resources, and often identify a ‘clinical champion’ who drives the implementation of PBM as the new standard of care. This then triggers a phase of transformation for the hospital, because detecting patients with anaemia requires some reorganisation. They set up training programmes, and ultimately, they put in place systems to monitor performances,” reports Axel Hoftmann.

EAHM 2019: an unmissable opportunity

“For Vifor Pharma, therefore, the EAHM congress is an extraordinary opportunity to come and meet all these hospital managers. We did already attend in Portugal. But this year we intend to be present in Ghent with a higher profile. When it comes to our key concept of Patient Blood Management, a partnership with the BVZD is a natural match, in particular when it is hosting a European congress. We have very high expectations of this congress, and we hope to meet with many of you there,” concludes Jean-Christophe Goirand.

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