Safe blood transfusion can avert deaths, say experts

Kathmandu, June 8:

Safe blood transfusion can bring down maternal mortality and morbidity, health experts said today.

Speaking at a programme ‘Safe Blood for Safe Motherhood’, held to mark the World Blood Donors’ Day 2007, Dr Manita Raj Karnikar, director of the Blood Transfusion Service, said, “Over 40 per cent of blood is supplied for maternity cases. Only 11.4 per cent of women have been donating blood. Among them, 10.8 per cent are from Kathmandu.”

“Women should donate blood to cope with blood shortage,” she said at the programme organised under the aegis of the Blood Donors’ Association Nepal (BLODAN). Awareness programmes should be launched among women to encourage them to donate blood, she said. “Everyone should donate blood at least twice a year to cope with blood shortage.”

Dr Bimala Lakhey, chairperson of the technical committee at the Safe Motherhood Network Federation Nepal, said, “Shortage of blood is to blame for 19 per cent of mortality among women.”

“The BLODAN has been running week-long awareness programmes since last year to motivate people to donate blood,” Mahendra Bilash Joshi, president of the BLODAN, said.