Processes and Software Building 35: Donor Malaria Test Screening

Processes and Software Building—Part 35:

Malaria Testing Donor Screening Process

Zeyd Merenkov, MD, FCAP, FASCP

Independent Consultant in Transfusion Medicine and Information Technology

The malaria screening varies considerably by country.  I chose for Qatar to follow a combination of WHO and Australian guidelines as per the attached criteria.  We used a malaria antibody screen and malaria antigen test.  There are many alternate approaches, including using a malaria NAT.  The actual specification was:

  1. Malaria Testing:
    1. Defer donor if he has been in malarial endemic zone within the past 3 months
    2. If travel to malarial zone > 3 months, do malarial antibody testing:
      1. Malaria antibody negative:  no deferral
      2. Malaria antibody positive, perform malarial antigen test:
        1. Malaria antigen test positive, refer to Infectious Disease clinic—defer until 3 years after cessation of treatment
        2. Malaria antigen test negative:
          1. Plasma may be collected
          2. RBCs and platelets must be destroyed.
        3. Repeat malarial antibodies after 3 years:
          1. If malarial antibody test positive, donor must not be used for RBC components but may be used for plasma production
          2. If malarial antibody test negative, reenter donor for all components
    3. Defer donor if he has received malarial treatment (not prophylaxis) for 3 years
      1. After 3 years, perform both malarial antibody and antigen testing:
        1. Defer based on section 5.2

The Medinfo testing algorithm follows:

To Be Continued: