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Thursday, December 1, 2022

World Blood Donor Day: Donating Blood is an act of Solidarity

Every year on June 14, countries all over the world celebrate World Blood Donor Day. The celebration is in commemoration of the birthday anniversary of Karl Landsteiner on 14th June, 1868.
The day is also an opportunity to thank voluntary, unpaid blood donors for their lifesaving gift of blood.
World Blood Donor Day celebration brings a precious opportunity to all donors to celebrate it at the national and global levels as well as remember and celebrate the birthday of Karl Landsteiner, a great scientist who won the Nobel Prize for his great discovery of ABO Blood Group System and the discovery of the Rheus Factor in blood grouping.
The Theme for 2022 World Blood Donor Day is: DONATING BLOOD IS AN ACT OF SOLIDARITY.
Blood and blood products are essential resources for effective management of different medical and surgical procedures. The need for blood is universal, but access to blood for all those who need it is not. Blood shortages are particularly acute in low- and middle-income countries.
An effective blood donor programme, characterized by wide and active participation of the population, is crucial in meeting the need of blood transfusion during peace time as well as during emergencies or disasters.
While an enabling social and cultural atmosphere with strong solidarity facilitates development of an effective blood donor programme, it is also widely acknowledge that the act of blood donation contributes to generating social ties and building a united community.
For 2022, the World Blood Donor Day slogan draws attention to the roles that voluntary blood donations play in saving lives and enhancing solidarity within communities.
For 2022, the World Blood Donor Day slogan draws attention to the roles that voluntary blood donations play in saving lives and enhancing solidarity within communities.

The specific objectives of this years campaign are to:

  • Thank blood donors in the world and create wider public awareness of the need for regular, unpaid blood donation;
  • Highlight the need for committed, year-round blood donation, to maintain adequate supplies and achieve universal and timely access to safe blood transfusion;
  • Raise awareness on the need for increased investment from governments to build a sustainable and resilient national blood system and increase collection from voluntary non-remunerated blood donors.
A particular activity that countries in the world are encouraged to implement for this year’s campaign is to disseminate to various media outlets stories of people whose lives have been saved through blood donation as a way of motivating regular blood donations and to motivate people in good health who have never given blood to begin to do so.
Other activities that would help promote the slogan of this year’s World Blood Donor Day may include donor appreciation ceremonies, social networking campaigns, special media broadcasts, social media posts featuring individual blood donors with the slogan, meetings and workshops, musical and artistic events to thank blood donors and celebrate solidarity, and colouring iconic monuments red.

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The need for safe blood is universal. Safe blood is critical both for treatments and urgent interventions. But access to safe blood is still a privilege of the few.
Most low- and middle-income countries struggle to make safe blood available because donations are low and equipment to test blood is scarce.
Globally, 42% of blood is collected in high-income countries, which are home to only 16% of the worlds population.
An adequate supply of safe blood can only assure through regular donations by voluntary unpaid blood donors. This is why the World Health Assembly in 2005 designated a special day to thank blood donors and encourage more people to give blood freely.
International organizations, including the World Health Organization, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, the International Federation of Blood Donor Organizations and the International Society of Blood Transfusion, among others, continue to work in close collaboration to provide guidance and support to their membership in this endeavour.
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