… Tasks Citizens on Voluntary Blood Donation
The Lagos State Blood Transfusion Service has commenced the deployment of its newly procured ‘Bloodmobile’ – a mobile vehicle equipped with everything necessary for a blood donation procedure – to the public and corporate organisations in continuation of the voluntary blood donation drive started earlier this month.
Speaking at a donor drive held at the headquarters of Ibile Oil and Gas, Ikoyi where the ‘Bloodmobile’ was recently deployed, the Executive Secretary of the Lagos State Blood Transfusion Service (LSBTS), Dr. Bodunrin Osikomaiya, explained that the mobile blood donation vehicle was procured to aid the blood donor drive and ease the conduct of community blood donation outreach campaign across Lagos.
She said: “Mr. Governor magnanimously approved the procurement of this specialised vehicle to help in our quest of meeting the State’s blood demand and ensure adequate supply of safe blood for transfusion in Lagos”.
Dr. Osikomaiya explained that the locally fabricated ‘Bloodmobile’ has some remarkable features typical of a standard blood donation centre, including compartments for registration and blood donor procedure, post-donation and relaxation spot, blood storage compartment, two electrical donor chairs and an inbuilt air conditioner.
The Executive Secretary, therefore, tasked healthy residents to support the initiative by donating blood voluntarily to ensure the availability of safe blood and blood products for transfusion in health facilities across the State.
Emphasising the huge demand for blood and the need for voluntary blood donation, Osikomaiya disclosed that about 37% of the population are eligible and clinically fit to donate blood, stressing that someone is always in need of blood every two seconds.
She noted that one pint of donated blood can save three lives, adding that this is why efforts are being intensified by the State government to meet and surpass the blood requirement through recruiting and retaining voluntary blood donors.
“Voluntary blood donors are heroes who deserve to be celebrated every day because the gift they give is the gift of Life. We encourage citizens to join this league of lifesavers by donating voluntarily”, she said.
Pointing out that blood donation helps to stimulate the production of more blood and promotes good health, the Executive Secretary stated that voluntary blood donors have access to blood without the demand for replacement from LBSTS blood banks.
Osikomaiya explained the process further saying, “Your blood is tested for haemoglobin, packed cell volume (blood level), viral diseases, blood group, Rhesus factor and genotype. It may uncover potential health problems such as elevated blood levels and low blood levels. It also helps to maintain iron stores at healthy levels which are linked to low cancer risk and give an opportunity to blood donors to have their clinical vitals done including blood pressure, pulse rate, weight and height”.
She enjoined citizens who are in good general health and between the ages of 18 and 65 years to imbibe the culture of voluntary blood donation at least once every three months.
While noting that the ‘Bloodmobile’ will be going around the State, especially to public places on donor drives, the Executive Secretary stated that citizens can also walk into any of LSBTS dedicated voluntary blood donation centres at General Hospital Lagos and General Hospital Gbagada or the voluntary blood donation centre at the Accident and Emergency Centre, located at the old Toll Gate and the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), Ikeja to donate blood.