16 June 2008
By Aditi Utpat
Six city–based blood donor institutions were felicitated by the State Blood Transfusion Council (SBTC) in Mumbai on the occasion of World Blood Donor Day (WBDD) on Saturday. Each institution achieved the unique distinction of collecting more than 1,000 units of blood last year.
The donor institutions are NGO Kamalvikas, Vishwakarma Institute of Technology, Bharati Vidyapeeth Engineering college, Cybage, Maharashtra Institute of Technology and Tata Motors India Ltd. State minister for health, Vimal Mundada presented certificates to these institutions.
Speaking to TOI, SBTC director Dr. Sanjay Jadhav, said that SBTC had chosen to felicitate 50 institutions from the state who contribute up to 20 per cent of the blood collected annually. “These institutions contributed 2 lakh litres of blood last year. We organised this programme to encourage them to continue their work and motivate others to work in a similar direction”.
A blood donation vehicle was gifted to the state on the occasion. While the vehicle will be used mainly in Mumbai, it will be gifted to Sassoon hospital after a month, said Jadhav.
The day saw a huge turnout of citizens to donate blood in the city. Most private hospitals reported having collected twice as much blood as on other days.
Dr. Elavia, incharge of a blood bank affiliated to a popular private hospital in the city said, “We conducted two blood camps in the city and collected 80 units of blood. On an average we do not collect more than 15 bottles of blood per day”. He said that publicity of World Blood Donor Day and the camps attracted a lot of working professionals who donated blood through the day.
On Saturday, several private hospitals organised blood camps not only in the city but also in fringe areas like Lonavala, Saswad and Chakan.
Donors who donated blood described the experience as ‘Very satisfying’. Speaking to TOI, Sandeep Athavale who donated blood at Janakalyan Blood bank in the city said, “I was aware of WBDD and had decided to donate blood. I have made a conscious effort to donate blood atleast twice every year”.
Speaking to TOI, social worker Ravindra Kulkarni who organises blood camps said that the requirement of blood increases in the months of April–July. Attributing the increased requirement to college holidays, he said, “Most of the students go away for summer vacation in this period. College students are our main source for blood collection”. He added that the holiday season also sees an increase in number of planned operations, increasing the demand for blood.
While private hospitals conducted a number of blood camps and collected a large number of blood units, government hospitals lagged behind. One government–run blood bank reported having received only three blood bags while another said it did not have stored blood units. “The blood we collect gets used in emergency cases that we tackle through the day”, said an official of a government blood bank in the city.