Kenya is facing an acute shortage of blood for patients seeking services in different hospitals and in emergency cases. The country annually needs 400,000 units (pints). In 2013 only 170,000 units of blood was collected. Urgent access to safe supplies of blood for transfusion is critical to saving many lives that have been lost. The safest source of blood is from regular, voluntary unpaid donors whose blood is screened for infections.
With this point in issue, BAPS Charities in conjunction with Kenya National Blood Transfusion Service (KNBTS) organizes annual blood drives. This year the blood drive was set up on Sunday 28th September 2014, from 9 am to 4pm at the BAPS Swaminarayan Haveli, Forest Road, in commemoration of the Westgate Tragedy.
The event was well attended by over 350 people. All potential donors were screened via questionnaires, followed by a primary check up of body mass, blood pressure and hemoglobin levels. The blood was then collected by the KNBTS for further screening. This thorough screening process ensured safety of available blood. At the close of the event 250 pints of blood were collected. Along with replenishing the available supply of blood, awareness was created about the significance of regular and consistent blood donation as a vital method of saving lives.