WBD 2021: Donate Blood To Save Lives

On 14th June every year, global attention is given to the act of blood donation.

This is to raise awareness on the need for safe blood and blood products needed for transfusion.

The day also brings to the fore the important roles played by voluntary unpaid blood donors towards improved health care delivery.

Moreover, the observance of world blood donors’ day provides an opportunity to ginger government and relevant stakeholders to provide adequate resources to promote collection of blood from voluntary non remunerated donors.

Millions of lives are saved yearly through transfusion while at the same time improving the quality of lives of patients who are terminally ill.

Blood is vital also for treating the wounded during emergencies like natural disasters, accidents, and armed conflicts. it is essential for maternal and prenatal care.

Although the need for blood is universal, access to blood by all who need it, is not.

Many countries of the world and Nigeria experience blood shortages in critical times.

Statistics show that only four percent of the Nigerian population donates blood voluntarily while more than ninety percent of annual blood donation is from commercial blood donors.

With this figure, the likelihood of transfusing infections like hepatitis b and c, HIV and syphilis are high.

To prevent this from happening, there is need to raise aggressive campaign against such practices while encouraging more Nigerians to embrace voluntary blood donation.

At present, the country contributes about twenty five percent to global maternal mortality rate.

However, adequate blood supply from non remunerated donors will lead to reduction in maternal and child mortality rates.

Kudos must be given to blood donors who have continued to provide services despite the outbreak of the covid 19 pandemic. More donors are still needed to come on board

Focusing on the slogan” gives blood and keep  the world beating”, this year attention is given to the essential contribution blood donors make to keep the world pulsating by saving lives.

Donating blood is not as scary as some people presume a mini physical examination will be carried out first to ensure that the donor is healthy and have enough blood to donate.

Secondly, only a pint of blood per person will be collected and afterwards, the donor gets some refreshments to get back to his normal life.

There is no gainsaying the fact that blood transfusion remains a cornerstone for effective health care delivery in any country.

To this end blood transfusion centers across the country should be adequately funded while there should be constant power supply to preserve the products.

Now, more than ever before is the time to donate blood, hence, people who are willing to make the world a better place to live in should give it a consideration.

In the words of mother Theresa “don’t look for big things, just do small things with great love”

You never can tell who the beneficiary of that donated blood could be.

Anthonia Akanji

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