Shanghai seeks to motivate donors
Shanghai blood authorities will step up efforts to encourage more people to give blood to ensure blood donations continue to increase in the city.
Blood donation in this municipality has continued to rise over the past several years. Voluntary donations grew to 92,000 liters in 2014, from less than 40,000 liters in 1998. And the city’s blood donation stations and sites received 334,000 blood donors in 2014, increasing about 85 percent over the 180,000 in 1998, according to the latest figures from Shanghai Blood Administration Office.
But officials said compared with developed countries, the blood donation rate in China and Shanghai still lags behind.
The donation rate for every 1,000 persons in China and Shanghai is about 9.35 and 13.8, respectively, compared with more than 20 in developed countries.
Chinese people have long been holding an unscientific cognition and understanding about blood donation, which they believe are no good to health. Consequently, many people are reluctant to donate their blood.
China, a country with about 20 percent of the world’s population, currently accounts for only 10 percent of total blood collection in the world. Over the years, local governments and experts have been taking sustained efforts to encourage more blood donation.
“For the big city Shanghai, to ensure the clinical use of blood is of great importance. Each year a large number of patients across the country come to Shanghai to seek medical treatment, which means more demand for the clinical use of blood,” said Zhu Yongming, official from the Shanghai Blood Center.
In recent years, Shanghai has explored various activities to encourage more blood donations in the city and has seen good results. For example, authorities have worked with an in-taxi media firm to promote public education. Figures from the media firm showed that nearly 80 percent of passengers had learned more about blood donation and participated in it by interacting with screens in the taxi.
So far, young people under 40 are the main force of blood donation in Shanghai. Besides that, a growing number of expats also become blood donors in the city. They helped meet the rare blood types’ demand, official said.
“With years of public education and awareness increasing campaigns, more and more residents now have been changing their views about blood donation and they understand that it won’t bring risk to their health,” said Zou Zhengrong, director of the Shanghai Blood Administration Office, adding that the next step is to encourage more people to translate into action.
Earlier, the blood authorities launched a public musical drama, I Will Be With You, which highlights the significance of blood donations for life, to encourage more young people to donate blood.
The musical was also staged during this year’s events to mark the World Blood Donor Day, held on June 14 each year.
This year, China hosted the World Blood Donor Day in Shanghai under the auspices of the World Health Organization. This year’s theme was Thank You for Saving my Life, which aims to close the bond between blood donors and receivers, and encourage more blood donations.