Alarmingly low blood stock levels

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Traditionally, the month of September is a difficult time at the South African National Blood Service (SANBS) owing to preliminary exams and preparation towards the final quarter of the year, as a result blood drives at schools and universities are generally not possible at this time of year. This together with poor turnouts at company‘s and organisational blood drives has placed immense pressure on the blood stock levels.

“SANBS needs to maintain a blood stock level of 5 days at all times by collecting 3000 units of blood per day to meet the demand of the thousands of patients who are reliant on blood transfusions for their survival. However at the moment we have only 2 days of blood stock available, and we are concerned that should this continue we are looking at a major crisis as we head towards the festive season.” – Vanessa Raju, Communications Manager of SANBS

It is only with the help of the selfless blood donors that we are able to help this situation. We have implemented a cut-back approach, where we are not able to meet the request by doctors, what this means is; should a doctor request four units of blood, SANBS may only be able to offer two units, and this approach will continue until the blood stocks recover.

SANBS is encouraging all regular donors and those who have made a conscious decision to join this cause of ‘saving lives’ not miss out on their next donation date. This is also a reminder to all donors who selflessly donated blood on Mandela Day, and to remember that they are due to donate gain and continue making everyday a Mandela Day.

Members of the public who meet the minimum requirements to give the gift of life by becoming regular donors are urged to visit us as soon as they possibly can
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Minimum blood donor requirements:
• Ages between 16 and 65 years
• Weigh 50kg or more
• Good health
• Lead a sexually safe lifestyle

To find out where your nearest donor centre is visit www.sanbs.org.za, call toll free 0800 11 9031 or sms your NAME and POST CODE of the area you live in to 31454 and we will sms you details of your nearest blood donor centre.