“Blood donation is a noble cause and deeply ingrained in our rich culture and tradition of Seva and Sahyog. I implore and call on all citizens to come forward and donate blood as part of the countrywide Raktdaan Amrit Mahotsav. Donating blood is a significant service to society and mankind in addition to fulfilling the requirement for the country.” This was stated by Union Minister of State, Health & Family Welfare, Prof. S P Baghel while inaugurating blood donation camp at RML Hospital, New Delhi today.
The slogan for this year’s World Blood Donor Day campaign is ‘Give blood, give plasma, share life, share often’. It focuses on patients requiring lifelong blood transfusion support and underlines the role every single person can play by giving the valuable gift of blood or plasma.
Accentuating the importance of blood donation and Raktdaan Amrit Mahotsav, the Union Minister of State, Prof. S P Baghel said, “In India, the demand for blood transfusion arises for every 2 seconds. On an average, 14.6 million blood is needed every year and there is always a shortage of 1 million. Besides lack of understanding and awareness, several myths and facts are associated with a blood donation that could be discouraging healthy people from turning into blood donors. Patients like Cancer patients, Sickle cell anemia and Thalassemia patients, require blood frequently. In every two seconds, someone in India needs blood and one out of every three of us will need blood in our lifetime, he stated. “Despite the technological advancements, there remains no alternative to blood and 1 unit of blood can save as many as three lives’, Prof. S P Baghel noted. Raktdaan Amrit Mahotsav aims to increase awareness regarding regular non-remunerated voluntary blood donations and ensure that blood or its components (whole blood/ packed red blood cells/plasma/platelets) are available, accessible, affordable and safe.”
Debunking myths surrounding blood donation, S P Baghel stated that “Blood donation doesn’t cause weakness, this is a misconception. A person has 5 – 6 litres of blood in their body and can donate blood every 90 days (3 months).” Body can recover blood very quickly; blood plasma volume within 24 – 48 hours, red blood cells in about 3 weeks and platelets & white blood cells within minutes. No weakness comes from this, on the contrary, people have to understand that before donating blood, a blood checkup is done before that, and you cannot donate blood before 3 months, blood donation is very important.
Emphasizing on the fact that we need to create awareness about blood donation, he said, “We should understand and teach our future generation about the importance of blood donation and organ donation. He also appealed to the people of the world to donate blood. He also mentioned that we need to spread awareness about debunking the blood donation myths in rural areas, as people in rural areas are still more surrounded by these myths.”
Prof. S P Baghel met the donors at the blood donation camp and appreciated their selfless act of donating blood. He also felicitated the blood donors who donated blood more than 100 times.
He also highlighted the nationwide drive that is supported by the centralised blood bank management information system called, E-Rakt Kosh portal, which acts as a national repository of blood donors. This also ensures a robust record of blood donors and will expedite blood availability when in need.