Wednesday, December 2, 2020
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Stakeholders launch a blood donation campaign in Narok

Kenya Red Cross Society, Narok County Coordinator Mr. Benedict Omondi speaking to the press during the launch of the two-day blood donation campaign outside Naivas Supermarket in Narok town today.

Ministry of Health through the Kenya National Blood Transfusion Service (KNBTS), the Kenya Red Cross Society and other partners have launched a two-day blood donation campaign in Narok County to encourage the residents to donate blood.
The event is part of the Heroes` Day celebrations, which will be held on Tuesday and is targeting to collect at least 100 pints of blood during each of the two days.
Speaking during the launch of the event outside Naivas Supermarket in Narok town today, Kenya Red Cross Society County Coordinator Mr. Benedict Omondi said the move has been occasioned by an acute shortage of blood in the county blood banks.
“Accidents and other emergency situations normally arise that require urgent blood transfusion but our blood banks have not been able to meet this need , thus leading to a crisis when blood is required to save a life,” Omondi said.
He said Kenyans have been known to donate a lot of blood during disasters which only serves to overwhelm the blood banks, but do not donate more regularly.
He called on Kenyans to register as blood donors so that they can donate blood regularly to help save lives.
“A normal adult normally has six liters of blood and donating a pint is just about five milliliters of this blood,” Omondi said adding that an adult male can donate blood four times in a year while a female can donate thrice.
The officer in charge of blood transfusion services at Narok Referral Hospital Ms. Serah Nchoko said any healthy adult aged between 16 and 65 years qualifies to be a blood donor and must weigh over 50 kilograms.
“Donating blood is all about saving lives, before donating blood, we check several things such as blood pressure to ensure that its right and then allow you to donate blood,” Ms. Nchoko said.
Two blood donors Gladys Naeku and Naomi Kwamboka a University student said they had decided to donate blood to help save lives. Kwamboka called on other Kenyans to come forth and donate blood to help compatriots.
There is a perennial shortage of blood in the country. Statistics show that last year, the Kenya National Blood Transfusion Service collected only 16 per cent of the one million units of blood the country needed.
In June this year, the Ministry of Health launched a National blood donation campaign ahead of the World Blood Donor Day. The campaign was launched by the Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS), Dr. Rashid Aman who said that the country’s blood situation is challenging and hence the need to restock.
He disclosed that the Kenya National Blood Transfusion Service (KNBTS), used to collect about 450 pints of blood every day.
However, with the onset of Covid-19 in the country, the situation has changed, and the figures have dropped by between 70 and 80 percent.
By Mabel Keya –Shikuku

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