Nidhi Sharma – AHN News Writer
Washington D.C. (AHN) – The Red Cross was slapped by the FDA with $4.6 million in fines after it failed to properly test blood donations and questioning donors.
The FDA reviewed 113 recalls of blood products by the Red Cross from April 2003 to April 2006, which involved the release of an estimated 4,094 unsuitable blood components.
The Red Cross did not perform required tests on the blood and failed to ask donors questions to determine their eligibility, leading to the fines by the FDA.
Since the legal agreement of 2003, the federal agency has fined the Red Cross more than $20 million. The penalties were issued after the Red Cross failed to follow federal standards safeguarding against blood contamination.
Peper Long, an FDA spokeswoman says there have been no reports of any patients being harmed,
The Red Cross officials say they are reviewing the FDA warning and are taking several steps to improve compliance with the rules. The Red Cross spokeswoman Stephanie Millian said the agency is committed to doing “whatever’s necessary to meet that goal.”
About 6.5 million units of blood are collected annually by the Red Cross, which is responsible for more than 40 percent of the nation’s blood supply, Millian added.