India has less than one percentage blood bank reserve.This lifeline can neither be created nor be substituted.This is a National crisis, which cannot be resolved by charity only.
In response to save the lives of the patients needing blood urgently, the association of AIIMS has tried to help people and provide solution for the same. They have taken a small but much needed and useful step.
They have decided to enlist all the doctors residing and students who are in the process of becoming a doctor at the hospital with rare blood groups, so that they can be informed about the blood need and need can be fulfilled by the blood donated by them on emergency basis.
Every two seconds somebody needs blood. Many a times people loses their lives because of lack of blood donor. One pint (375 ml) of blood is used to save three lives but only eight out of one thousand people are ready to donate blood voluntarily.
High demand of blood has forced the needy to get it from “Blood Agents”, who can easily be found outside any hospital.They provide with the required blood group at pre fixed prices.Outside GTB in East Delhi, a unit of blood can range between ₹800- 5,000/- a unit, whereas it costs between ₹12,000- 15,000/- for blood transfusion from the private blood bank of hospital like Max & Apollo.
India’s black blood market open itself upto anybody standing with a blood donation form outside a hospital gate. According to doctors blood tourism is one of the major reason why there is always shortage of blood, which is not accounted for.
Besides, since donated blood is not separated into its various components like RBC’s, WBC’s, plasma and platelets, each of which is used to treat specific clinical conditions; put extra burden on the country’s existing blood bank. Usually, an entire unit of blood, consisting of a specific components, which is the specific need of the patient is given to him/her.
AIIMS is making its drive successful using the most popular common connectivity channel- WhatsApp group. If a patient needs a rare blood group that can not be arrnged by the family then, alerts in the form of whatsApp texts will be passed on the WhatsApp group for doctors to voluntarily donate.
The problem is quite realistic for the place like AIIMS, where around 600-700 surgeries are conducted on daily basis. And the non vailability of rare blood groups like A negtive, O negative and AB negative is a major problem to be faced by doctors and patients as well.
The reason behind this is unawareness and a perception of myths like “I’ll get weak by donating blood”, “I can’t resume my normal day chores after donation or loads of blood is taken”, while recovery is completed in a day or two; one can easily do his daily chores, its just that you need to refrain from exercise or weight lifting for about 12 hours. Only 350 ml of blood is taken at a time which is also called one pint, while an average person has 5-6 litres of blood in his body. It is found that families mostly keep the donors ready in case of a pre- decided surgery, but the problem knocks in when blood is needed on short notice, like in case of accident victims. Sometimes even blood bank doesn’t have the blood of same group.
In my view, this is a great initiative being undertaken by AIIMS and I sincerely hope that it is successful in controlling the menace of black marketing of God’s finest creation – BLOOD !