The Ghana Chapter of the Korean Foundation for International Healthcare (KOFIH) Global Alumni has handed over 520 pints of blood to the National Blood Service (NBS) and two other health facilities as part of efforts to boost national blood stock.
While the NBS received 120 pints of blood, the two other beneficiaries; the Greater Accra Regional Hospital (GARH) and the Cape Coast Teaching Hospital (CCTH) received 300 and 100 units respectively.
At a brief handing over ceremony at GARH yesterday, an alumini of KOFIH and medical officer at the hospital, Dr Emmanuel Addipa-Adapoe, said the gesture was part of the chapter’s corporate social responsibility to help build a healthier society.
“Blood is an essential commodity in our health delivery system. There may be many causes of bleeding and people in need of blood; pregnant women who may need blood transfusion, those that are anemic, children with jaundice who will need blood transfusion among others,” he said.
According to him, the perennial problem of blood shortages at health facilities was a huge barrier to quality health care delivery.
Dr Addipa-Adapoe said it was crucial the country intensified voluntary blood donation which was the surest way of bridging the current demand and supply gap.
“Voluntary donation blood pool is the safest way of getting blood but as a country we are just under 30 per cent of its collection and that is why we have huge deficit of blood in the country.We still mainly rely on replacement donors and sometimes people are coerced to donate where they are remunerated but these are not sustainable. The safest blood is the voluntary unremunerated blood and KOFIH is committed to helping bridge this gap,” he stated.
The Public Health Specialist encouraged members of the public to develop the habit of voluntary blood donation which had enormous benefit to them.
“Voluntary blood donors are some of the healthiest people because once they keep on donating blood, they won’t want to fall sick, infected and they take good care of themselves.
If you are a voluntary donor you get a card which you can present in case of an emergency to be given blood, it also helps you to know your blood group and also helps in making decisions related to blood rhesus,” he said.
Dr Addipa-Adapoe said the KOFIH was committed to continuing the voluntary blood donation in subsequent years to ensure blood sufficiency in the country.
President of the alumini, Dr Ralph Armah, said the blood donation drive was part of series of activities KOFIH was embarking on to improve quality healthcare in the country.
He mentioned other activities including the club foot sensitisation project to raise awareness on the condition to reduce prevalence in the country.
KOFIH is made up of medical practitioners who have undergone free medical training in South Korea and working to improve healthcare delivery in the country.
Since 2013, KOFIH Ghana as part of its development assistance programme, has supported the Ministry of Health in maternal, neonatal and child health projects as well as national health insurance policy cooperation.