Do you know that regular blood donation not only gives the joy of giving life to others in need but also helps the donor in reducing cardiac diseases, lower down cholesterol and also increases life span. While several studies support that regular blood donation has got tremendous health benefits unfortunately, there is a huge demand and supply gap due to lack of awareness about this life saving act.
With this year’s ’World Blood Donor Day theme — every blood donor is a hero — experts observe that while the city is a huge medical tourism destination, with higher number of complex surgeries performed every day in city hospitals, there is a dearth of volunteers for blood donation.
Experts also maintain that since human blood cannot be manufactured artificially, it is extremely important for people to understand the importance of voluntary blood donation on a regular basis.
“Studies have also proved that regular blood donation has several health benefits to those who regularly donate blood than those who do not. Not just this, the life span is higher among those who donate blood regularly,’’ says, Dr Annapurna, consultant blood transfusion medicine, BGS Global Hospitals.
Speaking of the demand and supply gap, she further says, the state needs four lakh units of blood per year while it could only generate 3.25 lakh units.
The Sankalp India Foundation, which is a voluntary blood donation organisation, working for the cause of blood since 2003, states that there are not enough number of people standing up to become voluntary blood donors. The foundation’s estimates states that a unit of blood is required somewhere in Karnataka almost every minute and the shortage of volunteers will only pave way for professional donors and black marketing of the life saving red fluid.
‘’There is a severe shortage of voluntarily donated blood. Most of the blood banks are dry and out of stock due to various reasons’’, says Lalith Parmar, president Sankalp India Foundation.
So why and for whom eligible people should do regular donate blood? In addition to anaemic, pregnant women, cancer, leukemia patients undergoing surgery, accident victims, it is mostly needed by thalassemia patients as they must replace their blood regularly every month upto end of their life.
The eligible donor includes age group in between 18 and 60 years. While men can donate once in three months, women can donate once in four months.