Several lives are expected to be saved
by blood donated by Enabel staff recently.
The blood donation drive organised in partnership with Uganda Blood Transfusion Service took place at Nakasero National Blood Bank in Kampala.
Uganda Blood Transfusion Service is the body responsible for blood transfusion and safety activities countrywide.
The exercise aimed at increasing the supply of emergency blood following repeated cries for blood by regional blood banks and health facilities.
Enabel Health Programme Manager Dr. Monica Imi said blood shortage is a serious health problem requiring urgent and collective effort.
World Health Organization’s global database on blood safety calls upon countries to collect blood equivalent to at least 1 percent of their population.
Uganda last year collected 260,000 units of blood compared to a target of 340,000 units.
Dr. Imi said blood shortage is resulting in several avoidable deaths caused by conditions related to the shortage of blood including heavy bleeding in women after childbirth.
According to Uganda Red Cross Society, schools have been the number one blood collection point, supplying 70 percent of the blood.
Unfortunately, the 2-year closure of learning institutions due to COVID-19 cut off access to students hence worsening the blood shortage crisis.
Uganda has seven regional blood banks (Arua, Fort Portal, Gulu, Kitovu, Mbale, Mbarara, and Nakasero) charged with the responsibility of supplying blood to health facilities in their respective jurisdictions. There are also six blood collection centers located in Hoima, Jinja, Kabale, Rukungiri Lira and Soroti.
The collection of safe blood adequate to meet the transfusion needs of all patients in the country is one of the priorities of the latest Uganda Blood Transfusion strategic plan.
World Blood Donor Day
Uganda today joins the rest of the world to commemorate Blood Donor Day 2022 held under the theme; “Donating blood is an act of solidarity. Join the effort and save lives.” The theme focuses on the need to increase the number of blood donors.
Uganda is estimated to have between 80,000 - 90,000 registered blood donors.