In recognition of the high level of unmet blood needs in Nigeria, Access Bank Plc has supported the Lighthouse Global Health Initiative (LGHI) to implement a voluntary blood donation campaign in College of Education, Niger State.
Speaking during the campaign, the President, LGHI, Pharm. Adebisi Adenipekun, who is also a National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) member, emphasised that the blood drive was in alignment with NYSC community development service, adding that the objectives were to create awareness among young people on the need to be voluntary, non-remunerated blood donors.
At the end of the five-day campaign, implemented in partnership with National Blood Transfusion Service (NBTS); an estimated 10,000 people were reached with an advocacy message of the importance of voluntary blood donation through the Ultimate FM 103.9 radio platform; about 700 young people were directly reached with printed IEC materials which provided answers to frequently asked questions and burst the myths associated with blood donation.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the safest blood donors are voluntary, non-remunerated blood donors from low-risk populations. The blood donation rate in high-income countries is 33.1 donations per 1000 people; 11.7 donations in middle-income countries and 4.6 donations in low-income countries.
Despite the low blood donation rate in middle income countries, including Nigeria, there’s a high demand for the life-saving blood among children less than five years; women due to pregnancy related complications including post-partum hemorrhage; and road traffic/insurgents accident victims.