ALL countries need voluntary, unpaid blood donors who give regularly, to ensure that everyone who needs transfusion has access to safe blood, says the World Health Organisation (WHO).
June 17, 2022
2 min read
Blood donation an act of solidarity - WHO
Director General of WHO, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
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During the World Blood Donation Day celebrated on June 14, the Director General of WHO, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a statement that an effective blood programme, characterised by wide and active participation of the population, was crucial in meeting the need of blood transfusion during peace time as well as during emergencies and disasters, when there is a surge in demand for blood or when the normal operation of blood services were affected.
He said blood and blood products were essential resources for effective management of women suffering from bleeding associated with pregnancy and childbirth; children suffering from severe anemia due to malaria and malnutrition, patients with blood and bone marrow disorders, inherited disorders of hemoglobin and immune deficiency conditions, victims of trauma, emergencies, disasters and accidents, as well as patients undergoing advanced medical and surgical procedures.
“The need for blood is universal, but access to blood for all those who need it is not,” said the WHO boss. “Blood shortages are particularly acute in low-and middle-income countries.”
While an enabling social and cultural atmosphere with strong solidarity facilitates development of an effective blood donor programme, Dr Ghebreyesus said it was also widely acknowledged that the act of blood donation contributed to generating social ties and building a united community.
The WHO leader said other activities that would help promote this year’s theme might include campaigns and events to thank blood donors and celebrate solidarity.
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The World Blood Donor Day was created to raise awareness of the need or safe blood and blood products for transfusion and to support national blood transfusion services, blood donor organisations and other non-governmental organisations in strengthening and expanding their voluntary blood donor programmes by reinforcing national and local campaigns.
The day also provides an opportunity to call to action governments and national health authorities to provide adequate resources in order to increase the collection of blood from voluntary, unpaid donors and manage access to blood and the transfusion of those who require it.