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SANBS is calling on South Africans to donate as blood stock runs low

SANBS

The SANBS have issued a request for people to donate blood as their stock dips low and is only enough for the next two days. Here is info for first time donors.

 

Only 1% of the population in South Africa are active blood donors. This means the organisation often experiences shortages in supply. The SANBS would thrive if they had a constant 5 day stock rotation.

Over the last week the organisation has made multiple requests for blood donations. Their main concerns at the moment are receiving donations of Group O blood as well as donation shortages in the Kwa-Zulu Natal. Concerns aside they welcome all donations.

If you have never been a donor but you are interested in the process SANBS have compiled information for you. The donation process is really straight forward. These are some of the things that will be required to make a donation:

  • You will be required to complete a Self Exclusion Questionnaire (SEQ) . The questions are meant to assess your health and lifestyle to ensure you are well enough to donate blood and that your blood may not be of any risk to a patient who may receive it.
  • This is followed by a one-on-one interview with the nurse who goes through the questions to ensure that the questions are understood and that the donor understands the importance of being honest on the questionnaire.
  • Your blood pressure and haemoglobin (iron) levels are checked. (The checking of your iron level is done with a small prick to your finger.)

Once you have passed these requirements you will be taken to a comfy chair where your donation will be taken. A nurse will join you and the following will happen:

  • You will confirm your name, address and date of birth
  • The nurse will examine your arm and place a cuff on your arm to maintain a small amount of pressure during donation (this does not measure blood pressure).
  • The nurse then examines your arm to find a suitable vein and clean it with an antiseptic sponge.
  • They insert a needle in your arm which will collect your blood into a blood bag with your unique number.
  • SANBS only use new, sterile needles which are used once and incinerated thereafter.
  • A scale weighs the blood and stops when you have donated 480ml. This usually takes between 5-10 minutes.
  • In addition to the blood bag donated, 3 small viles of blood will also be collected. This is what goes through for testing with the unique number that refers back to the blood donated.

The entire process takes about 30 minutes from start to end. To find a donation centre near you, check here. You can also contact SANBS if you have any queries.


Sources: SANBS
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