As Nigeria joins the rest of the world
today to mark the 2015 World Blood Donor
Day, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry
of Health, Mr. Linus Awute has said that
the estimated blood needs in Nigeria stood
at between 1.4 and 1.7 million units per
annum.
He gave the figure yesterday during the
commemoration of the 2015 World Blood
Donor Day tagged: “Thank you for saving
my life’’ in Abuja.
“Unfortunately, much less is collected,
leading to avoidable deaths and morbidity
particularly among our women folks,
newborn children, victims of road traffic
accidents and insurgencies.
“The situation can improve if only one
per cent of our country’s adult population
commit themselves to voluntary nonremunerated
blood donation on a regular
basis.
“This will go a long way in getting rid of
touts and blood racketeering,’’ he said.
He said that the use of blood and blood
products had become an integral part of
modern medical practice, adding that about
108 million units of blood were utilised per
annum in the world.
Awute, however, urged Nigerians to take
important decision of becoming voluntary
non-remunerated blood donors.
“ The use of blood is far too critical to
be left in the hands of touts and racketeers,
who commercialise this precious gift of
life,’’ he said.
The permanent secretary said that
statistics shows that voluntary non
remunerated blood donation accounts for
only 10 per cent of the total blood collection.
He said there was need to urgently reverse
the trend.
The World Health Organisation, WHO,
Country Representative, Mr. Rui Vaz, said
that about 65 per cent of blood donation in
the world was used by children below five
years of age.
“Some of the children that need the blood
can be due to some communicable diseases
like Malaria and other infectious diseases.
Earlier, the Director of Hospital Services,
Dr Patience Osinubi, said that the focus of
the day was to thank blood donors who had
saved lives through their blood donations.
Mr. Nathaniel John, a staff of Nigerian
Pilot Sunday and his wife, Loveth, were
given an award for the highest blood donor
for this year.
The awardees, however, encouraged
youths to donate blood as a way for them to
know the state of their health.


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