The National Blood Transmission Service (NBTS) has called for a National Blood Reserve to take care of Nigerians in an emergency situation.
The Coordinator of the Abuja Centre of NBTS Dr Joseph Amedu, made the call when he paid a courtesy visit to the Director General of Voice of Nigeria in his Office, in Abuja Nigeria
Dr Amedu said that currently, the service was embarking on a One Million Safe Blood Initiative to educate Nigerians on the need for blood donation to prevent unnecessary death.
He lamented on the need to stop situations where people die for lack of available safe blood.
“In 2014/2015 during the Abuja bomb blast, several people died because of no blood for them and if such thing happened in a place, we have to get prepared to prevent unnecessary death,” Dr Amedu said.
He said that the key achievement of the NBTS is the availability of safe blood units to the general public at a highly subsidized rate, reduction in the prevalence of HIV and other blood bone infections through transfusion of safe blood, and heightened public awareness on blood safety.
He also said that the initiative was born out of the need to provide a robust national blood system and key into the World Health Organisations (WHO)’s Action Frame Work to advance access to safe, effective, and quality assured blood production 2020-2025.
The Coordinator opined that the management of NBTS wishes to strengthen collaboration to achieve her mandates.
“We request your agency to assist us to inform, educate and counsel Nigerians on the need for safe blood donations to save lives, reduce death and increase life expectancy and other human development indices towards the realization of the next-level agenda regarding health in line with the Sustainable Development Goals and universal health coverage in Nigeria,” Dr. Amedu said.
To achieve the initiatives, there is need to mobilise the youth which constitutes about 85% of the voluntary Non-Remunerated Blood Donor pool.
While calling on the media to positively pass message to the youth on the need for national reorientation on blood issues, he noted that the role of the media was very crucial.
“The media has a great role in reorienting the Nigerian people on blood safety in general and voluntary Non-Remunerated blood donation in particular,” he stated.
The Director General Voice of Nigeria, Mr. Osita Okechukwu promised to give the agency the necessary support when the need arises
“We will continue to pledge that we will do our best to exactly publicise your fact but don’t get us on the propaganda side,” Mr. Okechukwu said.
The visit was to strengthen the existing relationship and to request the support of Voice of Nigeria for continuous collaborations in quest to develop initiatives that would strengthen the blood system in Nigeria through advocacy sensitisation and public awareness.
Source: Voice of Nigeria