The National Hemophilia Foundation’s (NHF) Medical and Scientific Advisory Council (MASAC) issued two new documents, which were adopted by NHF’s Board of Directors on September 3, 2020.
MASAC Document #262 addresses drawbacks associated with utilizing off-site laboratories to perform hemostasis testing for conditions such as von Willebrand disease (VWD) and hemophilia. Blood samples are often shipped to large national laboratories that frequently contract with health insurance companies, a cost saving measure that can, in some instances, compromise the accuracy of the results. There are several variables, including delays in processing and unsuitable storage temperatures at transport, that can affect the make-up of a sample before it even gets to lab for analysis. In some cases, samples must also travel across the country before reaching the requisite lab.
These timing issues can actually alter the composition of coagulation proteins such von Willebrand factor, and platelet-poor plasma used in screening, producing misleading results and a subsequent misdiagnosis of hemophilia or VWD. The document therefore urges healthcare providers to consider limitations associated with offsite testing and to refer patients, when possible, to hemostasis testing where on-site processing can be done in a “timely fashion.” The authors also recommend that national laboratories which limit hemostasis testing to off-site facilities, should offer screening only at collection sites that have on-site processing capability in preparing samples within one hour of collection. To read the entire recommendation download MASAC Resolution on Off-Site Hemostasis Testing.
MASAC Document #263 is the latest version of the council’s most enduring and broad-based treatment document, which includes descriptions of, and recommendations for, the use of all therapies currently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat bleeding disorders. This document is accompanied by a list of these therapies, organized by bleeding disorder type.