Dire shortage of O-positive blood at the national referral hospital

The Jigme Dorji Wangchuk National Referral Hospital (JDWNRH) currently faces a serious shortage of O-Positive blood and the hospital’s blood bank is left with just three units of the blood group.

The hospital currently has managed the situation with the blood donation campaigns in Dodeydra Shedra, Motithang School, Bhutan Power Corporation (BPC) and Tourism Council of Bhutan (TCB).

Blood bank incharge Tenzin Rabgyel said “although the bank has sufficient supply of blood in the other groups, at this juncture there are more patients who require O-positive blood”.

He said the shortage could have been caused because more cases of diseases are observed in summer seen such as malaria, dengue and so on while more number of women deliver in summer and also more cases of accidents was referred from the districts.

The hospital also admitted more number of cancer patients, dialysis patients and renal failure cases and an oncology unit was recently opened.

“These are clinically chronic patient depending fully on blood bank,” he said.

About 15 to 25 patients need blood transfusion, of which 10 to 15 units of blood are used in a day.

The bank has about 60 regular donors (all types of blood) despite which the bank has run short of blood.

Some of these donors were found to be out of station, some got transferred while some of their mobile phones were switched off.

“We are forced to opt for replacement donors since we don’t have an alternative,” he said.

As of yesterday, four donors came forward to donate four units of blood.

“I am happy for because it is for a good cause,” said class 12 graduate Yangki from Kelki School.

The JDWNRH blood bank incharge said that blood transmission can also treat a patient and heal them. Therefore he urged voluntary donors.

However he said pre-donation checking will be done and only after confirmation that the blood is free from any diseases then he/she can donate 350 to 450 ml of blood.

A person who is above 18 and below 60 is eligible to donate blood. Further checking includes hemoglobin, blood pressure and the weight which should not be less than 45 kg.

It is said one unit of blood can treat three patients because it is prepared into three components such as Packed Red Cells (PRC), Plasma and Platelet.

A City Bus driver Pema Jurmey who has donated for the ninth time said he follows his regular schedule because it is a good cause and it is a blessing in disguise when the right type of blood is available for someone who is on the verge of death.

 

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