BHUBANESWAR: The 21-day lockdown has fuelled scarcity of blood as community organisations and NGOs have stopped blood donation camps due to complete restriction on movement. With blood banks in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack facing an acute shortage, patients and their attendants are being asked to arrange donors. There are about 10 hospitals in the State Capital having a blood bank each. Most of the blood banks are facing shortage of blood. Similar situation also prevails at two blood banks run by Red Cross and SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack.
According to e-Blood Bank, an integrated blood bank automation system, BMC hospital has zero unit of A+, A- and B- blood groups, while it has only 28 units of O+, four units of B+ and two units of O- as on Saturday morning. Similarly, Capital Hospital has no A-, AB- and O- blood groups, while it has 20 units of O+ and 10 units of B+ categories. The SCB Medical is left with no B- and AB- blood groups and has just five units of O+, two units of A+ and one unit each of A-, B+, AB+ and O- blood groups. On an average, about 100 to 300 units of blood are collected from a camp but due to lockdown, no camps are being conducted by the Capital Hospital and Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC).
As a result, the hospitals are reportedly asking the patients’ attendants and relatives to arrange blood on their own. In order to help the patients, some citizens are risking their lives by arranging donors and accompanying them to the hospitals for blood donation. Members of Lifeline Charitable Trust, an NGO, arranged donors and provided blood to four thalassemia patients each on Thursday and Friday. Trust president Dhirendra Thakur said, “We are arranging blood mostly for thalassemia patients or those having hemoglobin (Hb) less than 6 g/dl.
A couple with their nine-year-old daughter suffering from thalassemia arrived at SCBMCH from Narasinghpur on Friday. But the hospital authorities refused the family to provide blood,” said Thakur. When the request was received, his organisation arranged a donor and one unit blood was provided to the patient at SCB. Similarly, a patient from Sundargarh was admitted to Capital Hospital here for a surgery and his hemoglobin level was 6 g/dl but his wife and attendant could not manage blood for him. A donor was arranged and one unit was provided to the patient, he said.