Become a regular blood donor

2015-06-10 06:02

Blood Donor Month

PHOTO:Sourced Blood Donor Month

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AS the world commemorates Blood Donor Month in June, the South African National Blood Service (SANBS) KwaZulu-Natal zone has only enough stock to last two days.

SANBS spokesperson Khulekani Zuma­ said that the current blood stock is not looking good.

“We currently have a stock of blood that can last for only two days and nationally we are also below the safe line as we only have blood that can last for three and half days.

“For SANBS to be comfortable, and to meet the daily demand of blood, we need to have blood stocks that could last for five days, or more.”

During Blood Donor Month people are sensitised to the urgent need for them to become blood donors.

One unit of blood can save up to three patients.

Gill Phillips, a Pietermaritzburg donor, said that she donates blood because it is a quick way to make a huge impact.

“I donate to help others and you feel good to know that your donation is helping someone else.

“The first time I fainted. The second time I threw up. Fast-forward 35 years, and after trying again, I have donated blood 24 times.”

Group O blood type is known as the universal blood type as it can be given to patients of any blood group. Group O, is therefore, the most valued blood type.

“Having said that, patients in dire need of blood transfusion as part of their medical treatment depend on blood donors of all blood groups to donate safe blood regularly regardless of your blood type,” said Zuma.

Group O blood is often in greater demand than other blood groups, which is why SANBS encourages Group O blood donors to donate regularly.

SANBS is calling on those who meet the requirements and regard themselves as safe blood donors to donate blood at any donor centres or in any of SANBS’s mobile blood drives around the Midlands area.

“The decision to become a safe-blood donor means that you commit to participate in a vital community service that ultimately improves the quality of life for many. The primary motivation is to help other people and not to obtain any personal benefit.”

•Weigh at least 50kg or more

•Between the ages of 15 and 65

•Are in good health

•Lead a sexually safe lifestyle

•Consider their blood safe for transfusion

•Commit to donate blood regularly

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