The Malawi Blood Transfusion Service (MBTS) says Malawi needs around 10, 000 pints of blood to meet the anticipated high demand of blood during this coming festive season.
According to MBTS, Malawi requires at least 80, 000 units of blood for the whole year, but 10, 000 points of blood is required to cater for the festive season only.
“The country requires 10, 000 units in December and part of January due to the high incidences of Malaria-induced anemia. During this period, blood collections are low,” reads part of a press statement issued by the MBTS Wednesday.
Against this background, the MBTS in conjunction with the Ministry of Health has organized Blood Donation awareness Week (BDAW) to increase stock levels to meet the requirements during this festive season and raising awareness on the importance of voluntary blood donation.
With the urgent need of stopping blood shortages in hospitals, MBTS calls upon a collective approach from the general public.
“Everyone must take part in voluntary blood donation either by donating blood or by mobilizing others. There are a number of factors causing blood shortage in our hospitals. The fact that there are different types of blood groups bequeaths us with patients in need of different types of blood.
“When some types are not available, lives of patients are put at risk. In addition, many Malawians are not willing to give blood. This affects our ability as a nation to meet the 80, 000 units annual blood requirement.
The blood donation basics requires one to be in a healthy condition, aged between 16 to 65 years and weighing at least 42 kilograms and pass some health checks like blood level and blood pressure.
The BDAW is expected to be from the week running November 28 to December 3 with financial support from Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The sessions will be conducted at all MBTS centres in Blantyre, Lilongwe, Mzuzu and Balaka and in some selected districts like Zomba, Kasungu, Rumphi, Salima, Thyolo, Dedza and Chitipa among others.