Blood bank Sanquin will conduct a trial next year in which donors can have their blood tested for various diseases as a preventive measure. Sanquin will announce this on Thursday. The trial is part of a multi-year scientific study that should clarify whether it is possible to see at an early stage whether someone has a chance of developing a certain disease via certain properties in the blood.
Sanquin also hopes that the screening will improve the quality of life of donors and reduce general healthcare costs in the Netherlands. A preventive examination should also make it more attractive to donate. The blood bank expects that the demand for plasma in particular will increase considerably in the coming years.
Donated blood and plasma are already being tested by Sanquin for various communicable diseases, such as HIV and hepatitis B. This will be expanded considerably in the trial, which will include testing for diabetes, cardiovascular disease, immune problems and cancer. If the trial proves successful after a number of years, all donors will be given the opportunity to receive additional information about their health.
Research by the blood bank would show that a “very large part” of donors support the idea of preventively detecting diseases in their blood. About 400,000 donors are registered with Sanquin. The blood bank emphasizes that the preventive examination for diseases is a voluntary choice of the donors.