Help restock depleting blood banks – Fist Lady
The First Lady, Mrs Rebecca Akufo-Addo, yesterday appealed to the public to help restock the depleting blood banks and save lives, as the country joined the rest of the world to mark World Blood Donor Day.
She said the need to donate blood to the country’s blood banks had become more critical than ever since many of the locations that used to host blood drives, had closed their doors in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Every day in Ghana, hundreds of blood donations make the difference between life and death. But with the COVID-19 outbreak…It is now even more difficult to maintain sufficient blood supply for people in critical conditions”, she said.
Mrs Akufo-Addo, who is also the executive director of the Rebecca Foundation, made the appeal in a statement she issued in Accra yesterday in commemoration of World Blood Donor Day.
The World Health Assembly in 2005 designated June 14 each year to thank blood donors and encourage more people to give blood freely.
This year’s theme is ”Safe blood saves lives” with the tagline ”Give blood and make the world a healthier place”.
The theme was to call to action governments, national health authorities and national blood transfusion services to provide adequate resources and put in place systems and infrastructures to increase the collection of blood from voluntary, non-remunerated blood donors.
According to Mrs Akufo-Addo, saving lives through blood donation required concerted efforts thus appealed to all healthy Ghanaians to lend a hand in the worthy course.
“It is in these times of crisis, that we must come together to save lives. So today I am supporting the call for all healthy Ghanaian citizens, to be Champions of Change, Please give blood and save lives”, she said.
Her appeal comes weeks after the National Blood Service (NBS) said it was in dire need of blood to save the lives of patients on emergency care because members of the public were hesitant to donate blood due to fear of contracting COVID-19.
The Chief Executive Officer of the NBS, Dr Justina Kordai Ansah, in a new report, said the blood banks across the country had had their stocks exhausted because of the impact of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
“The COVID-19 pandemic has had profound effects on us in terms of maintaining blood supplies. More than 50 per cent of our blood donors are from the educational institutions which have been closed down because of COVID-19.
“Religious organisations and corporate bodies who are also principal donors are currently not available because of the restrictions on movement and this has resulted in acute shortage on containment of blood and blood components in the country,” she said.
BY TIMES REPORTER