Over 100 students of Takoradi Technical University on this year’s World Blood Donor Day have donated pints of blood to support the restocking of the Effia-Nkwanta Regional Hospital. The voluntary blood donation exercise organized by the Takoradi Technical University Hospital was participated by students from the various halls of the university. Speaking at the event, the Medical Director of the University Hospital, Dr. George Kojo Owusu gave the rationale for the event.
“It’s extremely important that we have blood at our regional hospital all year round because we have people who get involved in road traffic accident who may need blood. Certain group of our sick people who may need frequent transfusion, sickle cell and others, so there is always the need to support the regional hospital to have adequate blood…As a university, we have young adults who are very fit and can donate. The benefit has to do with the fact that, once we have blood at the Regional Hospital, any time any student from the university may require blood, so we call on the regional blood group at the hospital and we have blood”, he said.
Dr. Owusu also stated some benefits to the blood donor.
“As a student, you will be given a card as a donor and any time you are in need of need blood or anytime a relative may be in need of blood, you can present this and they may give you blood. You will not have to struggle to get blood since you are a donor yourself. So I think as a university, from time to time we have students coming with complications of conditions which I may require blood and we’ve gone to Effia Nkwanta on several occasions and we’ve gotten blood. So we think that there’s the need to support them and support the regional hospital to get blood so that we can fall on them anytime we may need blood. It’s extremely important that, we support this call for us to donate“, he added.
A Medical Laboratory Scientist at the Effia-Nkwanta Blood Bank, Bastu Odoka, while commending TTU for the donation gave a dire situation of the hospital’s blood bank and the need for the public to donate.
“Currently I will say our stock is very low when it comes to blood banking or blood donation in general. The aim now is to get blood from voluntary or unpaid donors, so that blood will be readily available for somebody who needs the blood so that blood can be transfused…This is because, in Ghana, every two seconds there is somebody who needs the blood. Thus either the person is coming to give birth or a child is suffering from anemia or malnutrition. In fact, ideally, we should always have blood available there for people who need it. But our current situation is not such encouraging and so we have to rely on family replacement. When I say family replacement it means we have to rely on relatives of patient who need blood before we are able to actually serve people with blood and when that happens it’s very bad. When there is an emergency, we need to actually save the person first, but if there is no blood we can’t wait for the relative to come sometimes, so it makes the work really difficult. At least if we can get 100 pints of blood it will go a long way to save life. Per last year’s own we had 75 pints of blood from Ahanta and Ghacem Halls. So we are expecting 100 or more from all the four halls.”, he noted.
He however discouraged last-minute blood donation.
“The general perception people have with regards to donation is that, they want to wait till they have a relative who needs blood before they come and donate. When you do that, it can be too late. We need blood to be available when people needs it. So imagine you are walking and you are involved in an accident and you need transfusion. If we don’t have blood available at that time to be transfused to you at that time, you might lose your life, so you have to encourage others to come and donate”, he mentioned.
Simon Boateng, who is the Effia-Nkwanta Blood Bank Donor Organizer highlighted significance of the World Blood Donor Day.
“World blood donor day which is 14th June, is a day set aside to donate blood voluntarily…You get a donor card which can be present at the blood bank in case of emergency or when your relative is in need of blood.
You will also get free screening…When you donate blood it means you are healthy because it’s only healthy persons who can donate blood. You having the sense of being healthy boosts your confidence. This goes a long way to affects all aspects of your life“, he said.
The World Blood Donor Day was instituted by Carl Lei Stein, who brought up the ABO system and was born on the 14th of June.