By Doris Obinna

Permanent secretary, Ministry of Health, Lagos State, Dr. Olusegun Ogboye, says government is targeting increasing donated blood now at over 115,000 units to 200,000 units to meet annual requirements and the World Health Organization’s recommended estimate of blood requirement per population.

He said, in commemoration of World Blood Donor Day (WBDD), the Lagos State Blood Transfusion Service (LSBTS) screened 100 per cent of all units of blood collected, apart from the recorded increase in donated blood in over 115,000 units:

“LSBTS has adopted a hybrid of decentralized blood services at its blood collection, distribution, screening and certification units with a highly centralized post-collection blood processing, specifically, component production as well as regulatory, monitoring, enforcement activities.

“Since its establishment in June 2004, LSBTS has increased the availability of safe blood, curbed the menace of quackery and improved the quality of the blood provided by the state. There has been an increase in the number of voluntary blood donation centres in public and private health facilities with accompanied strengthening of the haemoid vigilance programme according to international best practices to ensure safe blood processes.

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“The LSBTS has commenced the process for complete automation in the screening and certification of blood for transfusion transmissible infections, implementation of the LSBTS, blood inventory management system and extended phenol typing of blood group antigens to reduce the incidence of adverse events in blood transfusion.”

Executive secretary, LSBTS, Dr. Biodun Osikomaiya, said: “World blood donor day is a day of global observance, celebrated all around the world on June 14 yearly. This event is meant to raise awareness on the crucial need for safe blood and blood products, to thank blood donors for saving lives with their precious gift of blood and to recruit healthy individuals to be voluntary blood donors.

“The slogan for the Y2023 WBDD campaign is ‘Give Blood, Give Plasma, Share Life, Share Often.’ The access to a secure blood and blood component supply, based on voluntary unpaid donation is vital for all patients including many requiring emergency need and life-long blood transfusions for conditions such as post-natal haemorrhage, accident victims, sickle-cell anaemia and haemophilia.»

Osikomaiya disclosed that about 37 per cent of the population are eligible and clinically fit to donate blood: «Someone is always in need of blood every two seconds.

«Eligible citizens can donate blood by walking into any of LSBTS dedicated voluntary blood donation centers at General Hospital Lagos and General Hospital Gbagada or the voluntary blood donation center at the Accident and Emergency Center (A&E), located at the old Toll Gate and the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), Ikeja to donate blood at any time.»