By Chris Elliott……..
Having had the misfortune in the past to be hospitalized and need blood transfusions and also have the task of collecting supplies from the Lefkosa Blood Bank for a loved one, I am acutely aware of the knife-edge situation here in the TRNC when blood is needed for a patient’s treatment.
Therefore it was with pleasure that we gave our support this week to publicising the British Residents Society Blood Donation Day event on 15th October at the Girne State Hospital.
The British Residents Society will hold further blood donor days in 2017 and you have to ask yourself where further donations will come from to support the Lefkosa Blood Bank before the next blood donor day.
The biggest difficulty we face in a multi language community is the sharing of news to reach everyone which in the main in the media is either in Turkish or English and one excellent initiative to communicate emergency requirements for blood donation was the setting up of the Save a Life, Give Blood scheme by Steve Collard and a number of friends with the approval of the TRNC Ministry of Health. Click here to read more.
I have just received the following message requesting help from Steve Collard and clearly many more potential donors need to register on the emergency telephone alert system so messages can be sent to individuals when special blood types are required.
Appeal for help!
As you may be aware we have taken over the emergency blood requests from the British Residents Society and many existing blood donors are coming up to an age or taking medications that do not allow them to donate anymore.
Our Save a Life – Give Blood (0542 880 0112) system was set up for emergencies only but over the past month private hospitals have contacted us for bloods for preparing planned operations. Getting blood for these operations has left our donors thin on the ground and when the same blood group was needed the following week for emergency cases, no donors were found.
We have also had problems at the Girne State Hospital where no nurse has been available to take blood so the only option is for donors to go to the Lefkoşa State Hospital. This in itself has been a problem because some people will not travel that far.
We will now only deal with the main blood bank and there is a BRS guide click here that is for donors about ages and medications. The private hospitals have sent away donors because they have their own agenda.
Last week we were asked for bloods for an operation today (3rd October) and no one came forward despite. 163 members with that blood group being sent SMS messages and we also followed this up with an appeal on BRTK Radio and through the Cyprus Today newspaper.
There is a vast number of potential younger donors at the various universities which we will be approaching to introduce our Emergency Blood Donor scheme which has the approval of the TRNC Ministry of Health.
Stephen C Collard