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National blood drive kicks off today

Health & Science - By Graham Kajilwa | June 12th 2020 at 07:40:00 GMT +0300

A three-day blood drive kicks off today as the country gears up to commemorate World Blood Donor Day on June 14.

The drive dubbed 'Unity Blood Donation and Awareness' organised by Damu Sasa System Ltd seeks not only to replenish the dry blood bank, but also raise awareness on the importance of this life saving commodity.

The donation drive will be carried out at KICC grounds.

Kenya’s demand for blood is to the tune of 500,000 units. However only 180,000 units is collected annually.

“Evidence suggests that the situation will be worse this year due to the pandemic. The measures put in place such as restricted movement and physical/social distancing, in response to the pandemic, constrain the smooth running of blood services,” Damu Sasa System Ltd said in a statement.

Other partners in the initiative include the Ministry of Health, Kenya National Blood Transfusion Service, Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC), Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) and Postal Corporation of Kenya.

There has been a drop in the number of individuals visiting healthcare facilities.

Some of those affected are women with pregnancy and childbirth complications; children with severe anaemia due to malaria and malnutrition; patients with blood and bone marrow disorders, inherited disorders of haemoglobin and immune deficiency conditions.

The group also includes people with traumatic injuries in emergencies, disasters and accidents; and patients undergoing advanced medical and surgical procedures.

“Left unattended, the situation could worsen,” Damu Sasa System said. “The purpose of the Unity Blood Donation & Awareness Drive is to help alleviate the current blood shortage in the country.”

The drive will run for three days starting today to Sunday.


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