Hamad Medical Corporation’s (HMC) Qatar Blood Services receives an average of 150-250 blood units from volunteer donors daily and since the beginning of this year, more than 21,073 new donors have been registered, said a senior official.

Due to the high number of voluntary blood donors, Qatar is 100 percent self-sufficient for more than 10 years and the country relies entirely on local volunteer donors, said Siddiqa Al Mahmoudi, Medical Director of the Blood Donor Centre at HMC.

“Safe blood and blood products and their transfusion are a critical aspect of care in our healthcare system. They save lives and improve the health and quality of life of many patients every day.

“We in Qatar have a large number of voluntary blood donors and we are proud of them, and they are the greatest achievement of this generous country. With their support we have saved hundreds of patients,” she told The Peninsula.

“Our donors are our biggest pillar. Most of them donate blood on a regular basis.  During the weekdays we receive between 150 and 250 blood units from the donors and it increases up to 300 units on weekends,” she said.

Qatar Blood Services has launched a nationwide campaign to encourage citizens and residents to become regular blood donors in December under the slogan ‘Qatar is our blood,’ and it has registered more than 5200 volunteer blood donors until April-May.

“This shows the strong commitment of the community members,” said Al Mahmoudi.

She also said that blood donation in Qatar is very safe.

“Donating blood is easy and safe, and it is a simple medical procedure that is carried out by following international practices. Generally, there are no complications or side effects to the donor.

“To ensure that the process of donation is safe, potential donors are very carefully assessed for suitability before they can donate and to make sure that the procedure carries no hazard to the donors,” said Al Mahmoudi.

To be able to donate blood, a donor must be healthy, adult not less than 17 years of age, with no significant chronic illness or previous infections, with the bodyweight of not less than 50kg and hemoglobin level of not less than 13g for male and 12.5 for female.

On the day of the donation, the donor must be free of symptoms of fever and coughs or any other infection and he must have adequate hours of sleep.

Al Mahmoudi also thanked the thousands who regularly donate blood and called on all members of the community to consider becoming blood donors.

Blood donors can donate at the blood donations center next to Hamad General Hospital (HGH) Sunday to Thursday from 7am to 9.30 pm and Saturday from 8 am to 2pm.

Teams at Qatar Blood Services have stepped up precautionary measures to ensure that every blood donation is safe during the COVID-19 pandemic by including mandatory pre-screening before entering the blood donation sites, as well as regular cleaning and disinfection of all surfaces and equipment.


Source: The Peninsual Qatar