The total number of voluntary blood donors at Hamad Medical Corporation’s (HMC) Blood Donor Centre has reached about 24,320 as of 2013. A total of 2,348 males and 480 females donated blood last year in 341 mobile campaigns.
These figures were released at a ceremony organised yesterday by the HMC to honour the blood donors. The event was held under the auspices of HE the Minister of Public Health, Abdullah bin Khalid al-Qahtani.
HMC’s managing director, Hanan al-Kuwari, said: “HMC appreciates the invaluable contributions of all donors whose thoughtful giving helps us save lives every day. Our community has helped us achieve 100% blood self-sufficiency which makes HMC the most reliable healthcare facility in blood transfusion in Qatar and the region.”
HMC’s Blood Donor Centre co-ordinator Sidiqa Ismail al-Mahmoudi said: “We receive blood from regular individual donors. Other blood and platelet donations were also received through 341 blood donation campaigns held throughout the year. This annual event is intended for boosting awareness on safe blood and blood products needed to save the lives of mothers before, during, and after childbirth. Events like this shed light on the importance of blood donation as a life-saving solution to patients with life-threatening ailments.”
A total of 397 blood donors including 10 regular whole blood and platelet donors, and 20 female donors were honoured at the event. A total of 57 individuals representing various national, cultural, and youth organisations who participated in relevant awareness campaigns were also honoured.
Five platinum sponsors including Qatar Petroleum, Qatar Steel, Qatargas, Qatar Electricity and Water Company, and Qapco, in addition to three gold sponsors: the Ministry of Economy and Commerce, Al Darwish United Group and Q-Chem were recognised at the function for financing blood donation drives among their respective companies.
According to the World Health Organisation, every day, about 800 women die from pregnancy or childbirth-related complications. Blood donation is important to maternal health as severe bleeding during delivery and after childbirth is a major cause of mortality, morbidity and long-term disability. The theme for this year’s Blood Donor Day that falls on 14th June is “Safe blood for saving mothers.”
The goal of the campaign is to increase awareness about why timely access to safe blood and blood products is essential for all countries as part of a comprehensive approach to preventing maternal deaths.