Valley coping with shortage of blood

Kathmandu, December 9:

The Kathmandu Valley has been witnessing an average blood shortfall of 40 per cent for months, according to the Nepal Red Cross Society (NRCS). The valley has been witnessing a shortage of blood though the Central Blood Transfusion Service (CBTS) unit under the NRCS has been launching blood collection campaigns.

On average, the valley needs around 250 pint of blood every, but the NRCS manages to collect only around 150 pint of blood daily, an official at the NRCS said.

In the fiscal year 2006-07, the CBTS collected 115,720 pint, while the demand was 145,162 pint.

Dr Manita Raj Karnikar, director of the Central Blood Transfusion Service (CBTS), however, claimed that they are addressing the shortfall by separating the components of blood and distributing only the required components.

Karnikar blamed the lack of clinical awareness on the part of doctors and inappropriate use of blood during surgeries for the rise in the demand for blood. “This usually happens when the patients need blood of the negative group,” she added.

“Though the number of blood donors increased by 11 per cent last year, the increase was not enough to meet the increasing demand for blood,” she said.

With the objective of meeting the demand for blood, the Blood Donors’ Association (BLODAN) has launched an e-blood banking scheme.

BLODAN has also established blood collection centres at different parts of the the valley to encourage people to donate blood.

“The conventional way of blood collection is not enough to meet the demand for blood in the Kathmandu valley. We launched new programmes to increase the number of blood donors,” said Mahendra Bilash Joshi, president of BLODAN.

“We are planning to make cooperatives members of BLODAN to increase the number of

regular blood donors,” Joshi added.