Blood shortage in Khon Kaen, call for donors

Blood shortage in Khon Kaen, call for donors

A staff member of the Thai Red Cross Society in Khon Kaen monitors a blood donation at the centre in Muang distrct. (Photo: Chakkrapan Natanri)
A staff member of the Thai Red Cross Society in Khon Kaen monitors a blood donation at the centre in Muang distrct. (Photo: Chakkrapan Natanri)

KHON KAEN: Demand for blood transfusions is outstripping supply in this northeastern province and the Thai Red Cross Society is calling for blood donations from the public.

The request was made by the society's 6th regional national blood service, which covers Khon Kaen, Udon Thani, Nong Khai, Nong Bua Lamphu, Bung Kan, Sakon Nakhon, Loei, Kalasin, Roi-et, Maha Sarakham and Chaiyaphum provinces in the Northeast.

Wirasinee Chaimanee, chief of the Regional Blood Centre VI Khon Kaen, said there has been a shortage for several months now.

While the hospitals asked for more blood every day,  the centre could supply them with less than 20% of their needs. For example, a hospital which usually received 100 bags of blood per day would now get fewer than 20 bags.

Ms Wirasinee said the quantity of donated blood had dropped. Many blood donation units, especially at education centres, had suspended operations because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

"The centre initially set a target to acquire about 3,000 units of blood in August, but we have so far collected only 1,150 units, while hospitals in our service area have asked for more blood for every group," she said.

"Between Aug 1-25 we received requets for 6,125 units, but we could give them only 1,087 units. If the blood shortage continues, patients in need of blood will be severely affected," she said.

Ms Wirasinee said the centre was asking for urgent donations from the public. The blood centre followed strict health safety standards. Donors must be thoroughly screened by doctors at all centres.

Intending donars can do so at the office of the 6th Regional National Blood Service on Mitrapap road in tambon Samran in Khon Kaen's Muang district, the blood donation centre on the 4th floor of the new city hall, and at all provincial hospitals on official working days. 

On Saturday and Sunday, a mobile blood donation centre operates at Central Plaza, Khon Kaen.

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