The Western Cape Blood Service (WCBS) has urged eligible donors to donate blood and save lives as it has warned that blood stocks are critically low.
The blood service aims to maintain a 5-day blood stock supply in all blood groups at all times, but are currently sitting on a 2-day blood supply in O blood groups and a 3-day supply of A+ and B+.
By simply rolling up your sleeves, donors can save up to three lives with one donation as the WCBS urges those who can donate to find their nearest blood donation clinic.
Despite a low supply, WCBS public relations manager Marike Gevers has indicated that while collecting blood remains challenging, there has been an increase in donations since the beginning of February, as per IOL.
WCBS public relations manager Marike Gevers said blood collections continue to be challenging, while blood usage has increased markedly since the beginning of February.
“After the voluntary blood donation, units are transported to the nearest WCBS office for testing and processing. Blood is spun down and separated into three key components, namely red blood cells, plasma and platelets.
“Each unit of blood is tested for HIV, hepatitis B & C, syphilis and blood group. Once blood and blood products are cleared, it is sent to blood banks and emergency blood fridges in hospitals where it is kept for patients in need,” Gevers said.
Individuals who are between the ages of 16 and 75, weigh 50kg or more, are in good general health, and lead a safe sexual lifestyle, are encouraged to donate blood.