Friday 23 October 2020 - 6:10:26 am

UAE Press: Blood donors deserve a big hearty salute

ABU DHABI, 15th December, 2019 (WAM) -- Blood transfusion saves lives and improves health, but many patients across the world requiring transfusion do not have timely access to safe blood. The unavailability of blood often leads to deaths, a UAE newspaper has said.

Every few seconds, someone, somewhere, needs blood. Providing safe and adequate blood should be an integral part of every country’s national health care policy and infrastructure, as World Health Organisation, WHO, officials suggest.

"Blood is the most precious gift that anyone can give to another person the gift of life," said The Gulf Today in an editorial on Sunday.

UAE officials deserve praise for developing the safest blood transfusion services according to the highest international standards and relentlessly supporting regular blood donors, besides encouraging them to continue with their humanitarian work. The fact that a total of 10,225 people donated blood, as part of the 7th edition of the "Dami Le Watani" blood donation campaign, of which 5,253 blood units were collected by the Dubai Blood Donation Centre, 4,100 were collected by SEHA-Abu Dhabi Health Services and 872 by the Ministry of Health and Prevention, highlights the caring spirit of the country and the donors.

The Dubai Health Authority’s, DHA, Blood Donation Centre had announced the launch of the campaign for the year 2019 on Nov.13, 2019, to encourage the community to donate blood and raise awareness about the importance of donating blood, as one blood unit can save up to three lives.

The campaign, which will continue until 16th December was introduced in 2012 under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council.

The Dubai Blood Donation Centre, which is under the Pathology & Genetics Department and Clinical Support Services and Nursing Sector, is the only blood donation centre in Dubai and provides around 50 percent of the total blood collected throughout the country.

As part of the campaign, the centre’s blood donation centre visited several entities to raise awareness about the importance of blood donation, including the Ministry of Defence, DEWA, Dubai Police, Dubai Executive Council, Dubai Municipality, the Red Crescent, DHA facilities, Nad Al Sheba Club, DP World and the Central Veterinary Research Laboratory.

As stated by Dr. Hussain Al Samt, Deputy Director of the Department of Medical laboratories and Genetics, the Dubai Blood Donation Centre is committed to providing a safe and adequate supply of blood to all DHA hospitals and private hospitals in Dubai, to save the lives of patients who require blood transfusions by ensuring that the services provided are up to international standards.

WHO statistics reveal that of the 117.4 million blood donations collected globally, 42% are collected in high-income countries, home to 16% of the world’s population. WHO rightly recommends that all blood donations should be screened for infections prior to use. Screening for HIV, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, and syphilis should be mandatory. Blood screening should be performed according to the quality system requirements.

"Blood donors who help save several precious lives, whether through regular or emergency donations, certainly deserve a hearty salute," concluded the Sharjah-based daily.

WAM/Esraa Ismail