|American Association of Blood Banks|
AABB (formerly known as the American Association of Blood Banks) is an international, not-for-profit association representing individuals and institutions involved in the fields of transfusion medicine and cellular therapies. The association works to improve health through the development and delivery of standards, accreditation and educational programs that focus on optimizing patient and donor care and safety.
The association was founded in 1947 as the American Association of Blood Banks. Throughout its history, the association has broadened its scope and mission. Today, its focus includes all of transfusion medicine, as well as cellular therapies, particularly those utilizing hematopoietic stem cells. In 2005, the association changed its name to AABB to reflect the changes in its scope and operations.
AABB's membership includes physicians, nurses, scientists, researchers, administrators, medical technologists and other health care providers. AABB members are located in more than 80 countries and AABB accredits institutions in more than 50 countries.
AABB works closely with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and provides technical input into the development of regulations involving blood for the United States. Virtually all major blood banks in the United States are accredited by AABB and more than 80 percent of hospital transfusion services in the U.S. are members. Accreditation by AABB meets the requirements of the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) for blood bank, transfusion service, and immunohematology reference laboratory operations.
The association hosts an Annual Meeting every fall, a premier event for the dissemination of research and information related to transfusion medicine and cellular therapies. The association also publishes a monthly magazine, a weekly newsletter, and a peer-reviewed research journal titled Transfusion. In addition, AABB publishes a variety of other related materials, including the standards by which it accredits institutions.
Since 1953, the organization has also operated a National Blood Exchange to facilitate transfers of blood between blood banks during shortages or when rare blood types are required.