Mass appeal for blood donations
TODAY is World Blood Donor Day and the SA National Blood Service (SANBS) wants to collect more than 18 000 units of blood.
According to the blood service, South Africa relies on just 1% of its population for donations.
As a result, national blood reserves are often low and donation drives have to be held to raise awareness.
Yesterday, SANBS, accord- ing to its website, had blood capacity for 3.4 days, with some types running short.
The blood service’s Ivor Hobbs said World Blood Donor Day highlighted the need to maintain a stable supply of healthy, safe blood and blood products, while encouraging people to become regular donors.
It was also an opportunity to thank the volunteers whose donations of blood saved lives.
Even if one could not donate blood, there were other ways to help, Hobbs said, such as raising awareness.
In South Africa, the timing coincides with the upcoming school holidays, when roads are busier and there are more accidents.
The World Health Organisation has appealed to African countries to strengthen national blood services, to enhance universal access to safe blood.
Check the SANBS website (sanbs.org.za) for the closest place where you can donate.