People in India not donating enough blood: Doctors - Hindustan Times

People in India not donating enough blood: Doctors

By, Lucknow
Oct 04, 2023 08:02 PM IST

Experts at a conference in India have warned that the country is not donating enough blood to meet demand, with donations falling short of the 11 million units needed annually. Sri Lanka has achieved 100% voluntary blood donation, but India is lagging behind.

People in India aren’t donating enough blood to save lives, said experts at the two-day 48th Annual Conference of Indian Society of Blood Transfusion and Immunohaematology (ISBTI) that began at King George’s Medical University (KGMU), Lucknow, on Wednesday.

For representation only (HT File Photo)
For representation only (HT File Photo)

“India needs about 11 million units of blood annually, but the donation hardly crosses the 9-million mark. Compared to other countries, Sri Lanka has achieved 100% voluntary blood donation six years earlier but in India, we are far behind the requirement,” said Dr Sangeeta Pathak, general secretary, ISBTI.

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“In Uttar Pradesh we need up to 10 lakh units of blood but the availability through voluntary blood donation is up to 7 lakh units annually,” said Prof Tulika Chandra, HoD, transfusion medicine, KGMU.

“Recently, we conducted a major campaign for blood donation which was a success. But instead of a campaign, we need to make voluntary blood donation a routine act to ensure blood or blood components are available to all who need it. Recently we made available 46 blood component separator units in state,” said principal secretary, medical education, Partha Sarthi Sen Sharma in his address.

Prof Rajeev Agrawal, HoD, plastic surgery, SGPGIMS, former head of clinical haematology Prof AK Tripathi, also shared their views during the programme.

In his address, chief secretary DS Mishra shared his personal experience regarding blood donation and stressed upon the need to give a push to voluntary blood donation.

“In certain medical conditions, where the doctor intimates in advance the need for blood, the family of the patient can donate blood and obtain donor cards to avoid delay in getting blood or blood components when needed. This can be done at any blood bank,” said Dr Amita Shukla, senior gynaecologist, SC Trivedi Memorial Trust Hospital.

“The only way to ensure that no patient has to wait for blood or blood components, is to increase voluntary blood donation,” said Dr Pathak.

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