Shang­hai seeks to mo­ti­vate donors

China Daily (Canada) - - FRONT PAGE - By WANG HONGYI in Shang­hai

wanghongyi@chi­nadaily.com.cn

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.

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