As the world celebrated Blood Donor Day (June 14) amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the call for blood donations is now more relevant than ever. The Ministry of Health (MoH) has been calling for citizens and residents of the country to come forward and donate blood, subject to their health conditions.
On the occasion of World Blood Donors Day, which is celebrated under the theme ‘Safe Blood Saves Lives’ and promoted with the slogan ‘Give blood and make the world a healthier place’, MoH, represented by the Department of Blood Banks Services (DBBS) and in collaboration with the World Health Organization, organised a blood donation campaign.
Many citizens and residents took to social media calling for blood donation while many, including a few public figures, came forward to donate blood.
“On World Blood Donor Day, I appeal to all to come forward and donate blood as there are many patients who need regular blood transfusion,” H E Dr Ahmed bin Mohammed al Sa’eedi, Minister of Health, said.
As per an earlier statement from DBBS, the Central Blood Bank is facing 50 per cent shortage of blood due to COVID-19. “Also, anyone who recovered from COVID-19 can donate blood or blood plasma to the bank. Convalescent plasma has seen some success in treating COVID-19 patients,” H E Dr Sa’eedi said.
One of the public figures who came forward to donate was His Highness Sayyid Kamil bin Fahad al Said, Assistant Secretary General for the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister for the Council of Ministers. “This day is meant to remind everyone to donate blood and in the light of the COVID-19 situation, we also remind whoever has recovered that it is very important for them to donate (blood plasma) to speed up the recovery of other patients and save lives. We urge everyone to come and donate blood to save lives,” he said.
Another public figure, Ali al Habsi, Oman’s ace footballer, who was also seen donating blood, said, “Today, I wanted to celebrate this day by donating blood and I wanted to say that it is very important for everyone to donate blood, especially during this time, because there are so many who need blood. This is a small part to give back to the community.”
In a statement, DBBS said it has taken some measures to overcome the anticipated shortage and meet the daily demands of blood units and components.
Anyone who wishes to donate blood can send a WhatsApp message to 94555648 for an appointment.