Every year, June 14 is marked as world blood donor day. According to the World Health Organization, June 14 is marked as the day to recognize the millions of people who save lives and improve the health of others by donating blood. The Day highlights the need to regularly give blood to prevent shortages in hospitals and clinics, particularly in developing countries where quantities are very limited.
In the Maldives, there is a very high need for blood donation and requires major public awareness on blood donation. This year the theme is ‘every donor is a hero”. Rightly so, we donate blood to save lives. With an endemic thalasaemia situation and more than half of the pregnant women in the country being anaemic, the need and the potential need for blood is very high.
Despite the need, there are many challenges. Firstly willing donors are scarce. Perhaps myths associated with donation. Major awareness creation is needed.
Secondly banking facilities are scarce too. To be exact, national banking still has issues and is highly limited. Especially for islands the situation is extremely bleak. Hence, it is imperative that such issues are addressed.
ADK Hospital also puts some effort to introduce blood banking. At present major equipment is installed and training is ongoing. It is envisaged that the blood bank will be in full swing by end of July.
To celebrate the blood donors day, the hospital ran a donor registration and awareness creation clinic for the day. Although it was not a major attraction, considerable achievements were made to collect potential donors for the proposed blood bank.