The Western Province Blood Transfusion Service (WPBTS) is calling on the public to donate blood in support of those in need.Michelle Vermeulen, the organisation’s corporate public relations officer, explains that as the non-profit organisation turns 80 this month, the aim is to raise awareness of the importance of blood donation.“WPBTS is a non-profit, independent organisation operating throughout the Western Cape. We work without prejudice to supply safe blood and blood products to all communities in the region, from Cape Town all the way up to George,” she explains.“It is our goal to be the benchmark transfusion service in South Africa. Our aim is to receive 700 units of blood on a daily basis in the Western Cape. Each donor can supply one unit of blood at a time.”The organisation, established in 1938, currently operates in Cape Town, Worcester, Paarl and George with fixed sites opened at Long Street in Cape Town, Blue Route Mall and N1 City.“We also have mobile clinics that go out on a daily basis to ensure that we have sufficient stock and we try to ensure that our mobile clinics are as accessible as possible.”She explains the whole process will take approximately 30 minutes. The procedure includes the filling in a confidential donor questionnaire and a confidential interview for new donors and only when required.“A finger prick test is done to check your haemoglobin level, which needs to be 12.5g/dl for women and 13.5g/dl for men. Once successful, you will then collect your blood bag and proceed to the donation bed.“Your blood pressure and pulse will be checked before you donate your unit of approximately 475mF of lifesaving blood. New, sterile equipment is always used for every donation.“Samples are taken, as we test your blood group, for HIV, hepatitis B and C and syphilis, with every donation. Once done, you can enjoy some refreshments, as you are remarkable and deserve it.”Vermeulen explains that after blood has been given, all donations are delivered to the organisation’s head office and laboratories in Pinelands for testing and processing.“We need to do this as soon as possible after donation to ensure that none of the components are lost. There is a definite need for blood and that’s why we have to aim for 700 units of blood collected on a daily basis.“Your one donation can save up to three people’s lives. Be remarkable and donate blood,” she adds.For more information call the Western Province Blood Transfusion Service (WPBTS) on 021 507 6300 or email email@example.com.