File photo: The SA National Blood Service has appealed to the public to donate blood. Picture: Matthew Jordaan/African News Agency (ANA)
File photo: The SA National Blood Service has appealed to the public to donate blood. Picture: Matthew Jordaan/African News Agency (ANA)

Urgent call for blood donations in Western Cape even amid Covid-19 lockdown

By Shakirah Thebus Time of article published Mar 26, 2020

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Cape Town - The Western Cape Blood Service said it faces a critical shortage of O- and B+ blood groups and urged donors to donate even during the lockdown.

The service’s Michelle Vermeulen said: “We would like to encourage all our healthy donors to please come and donate blood.

“Donating blood is seen as essential during the lockdown period as we need our donors to ensure that there is a sufficient blood supply in the Western Cape.

“We are relying on regular donors who are healthy to please come and donate blood.

“The Western Cape Blood Service has always had strict daily protocols in place. Clinic staff maintain a high level of hand hygiene.

“Staff sanitise their hands regularly by washing them with soap and water in addition to using hand sanitiser before and after each encounter with a donor,” she said.

“Donors are also asked to sanitise their hands before entering the venue and social distancing at each step of donating is put into place.”

Vermeulen reassured donors that there was no reason to suspect that Covid-19 could be transmitted through blood transfusion. “This is based on the fact that respiratory viruses, in general, are not known to be transmitted by blood transfusion, and there have been no reported cases of transfusion-transmitted coronavirus.”

For more information on the blood service and its clinics during the lockdown, visit wcbs.org.za.

The Western Cape Blood Service said it faces a critical shortage of O- and B+ blood groups and urged donors to donate even during the lockdown. Picture: Supplied
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