Zimbabweans urged to donate blood ahead of festive season

By  Charity Ruzvidzo

Harare – The Ministry of Health and Child Care has called upon the public to donate blood ahead of the festive season, as the country’s blood bank is currently low on stocks.

In a statement on their official website page, the ministry appealed to Zimbabweans to donate blood to save lives during the year’s busiest period.

“Ministry of Health and Child Care is appealing to all those who can voluntarily donate blood to do so, as the blood bank is critically low on stocks.

As the festive season approaches, the blood bank needs to be well prepared for the high demand for blood and blood products associated with this period.

“Presently, the National Blood Service of Zimbabwe (NBSZ) is struggling to meet the national requirements so far, therefore it is everyone’s responsibility to donate blood so as to maintain adequate stocks and prevent unnecessary and avoidable loss of life,” read the statement.

The ministry said measures were being taken to resolve the challenges currently faced by the national blood bank.

“We are aware of the corporate governance issues currently bedevilling the NBSZ. We would like to assure the public that a lasting solution to rectify these challenges is being worked on together with NBSZ.

Whilst a comprehensive lasting solution is being pursed, the Ministry of Health and Child Care is encouraging voluntary blood donation from all individuals who come from all walks of life, different backgrounds, religions and ages.

By choosing to donate blood on their own free will, without any payment, these individuals perform a ‘heroic’ act, a gesture of human solidarity with the power to save lives.”

The festive season is usually marked by increased demand for blood due to the high number of traffic accidents that take place during the period.

According to NBSZ statistics, 70 percent of blood collections come from school children and the balance comes from adults.

About 80 percent of the blood is transfused to adults and the balance is left for the youths.

In addition to accidents, blood is highly needed for scheduled operations and paediatric cases.

As part of NBSZ’s nationwide campaign to boost the blood bank this holiday season, the service is conducting blood drives in various neighbourhoods across the country.

According to the World Health Organisation, only one to three percent regular donors are needed to ensure adequate blood reserves.

December 2017
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