Critically low blood stock levels needs to be replenished

18 November 2020 | Local News

The Blood Transfusion Service of Namibia (NAMBTS) urges blood donations to improve critically low blood stock levels.

NAMBTS said that the blood donation ecosystem has been affected by Covid-19.

Blood collections have dropped significantly, with NAMBTS currently only having three days of bloodstock throughout the whole country.

With December fast approaching and blood levels being low, it is a crucial time for the service to collect enough blood to be able to meet demand.

The December period leading into January is always a difficult time to collect blood as donors are busy preparing for holidays and then start traveling.

“This year has presented even more challenges as that there is a significant decline in blood collections even before the holidays have commenced. Blood stock levels are already low leading into this crucial time of the year when we synonymously experience blood shortages and trauma incidents rise across the country”, said Zita Tobin, Manager: Donor Recruitment and PR for NAMBTS.

She added that due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, NAMBTS have seen a substantial drop in donations.

“Educational institutions play a critical role in ensuring that we have healthy blood supply levels, and since March this year collecting donations from the educational sector has not been possible.”

If you are well and able to spare thirty minutes of your time, regular and new blood donors between the ages of 16-65 years old can donate at any of the fixed site centres in Windhoek, Swakopmund, Walvis Bay, Ondangwa, or Oshakati.

NAMBTS has also scheduled numerous blood donation clinics in various towns throughout the festive season in a bid to avail the opportunity for Namibians countrywide to donate blood and help save lives.

NAMBTS reminded members of the public that the Corona Virus (Covid-19) cannot be transmitted through a blood transfusion as respiratory viruses are generally not known to be transmitted by donation or transfusion.

The organisation said that it had taken the advice of the Ministry of Health and Social Services (MoHSS) as well as the World Health Organization (WHO) in adjusting the nature of our operations to meet their recommendations, thus making it safe to donate blood during this period.

Blood donors can donate at a number of venues this week and all blood types are needed.

- You should be between the ages of 16 – 65.
- Weigh more than 50kg.
- Be medically healthy.
- Lead a safe lifestyle.
- Be committed to helping others.

Tips when donating blood:
- Eat a substantial meal 3-4 hours before donating blood.
- Drink lots of water and/or juice before, during and after donation.
- Take it easy on the exercise after donation.

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