The New Amsterdam Blood Bank has accumulated 1,325 units of blood thus far for the year 2017. With numerous outreaches and blood drives throughout the region, the Blood Bank was able to surpass its target of 1,200 units (assigned by the Berbice Regional Health Services) by 125 units.
Adding to this year’s count was the Skeldon Public Hospital which held its final blood drive for the year on December 15, according to the Department of Public Information. Blood pressure and sugar testing were also conducted as part of the exercise. According to the Doctor-in-Charge of the Skeldon Hospital and District Medical Officer Ryan Campbell, this blood drive was the largest held at the hospital for this year.
Doctor Campbell noted that donating blood every three months is beneficial to an individual’s health. He explained that contributing regularly reduces the blood viscosity, which in turn eliminates the iron that may possibly oxidize in your blood. An increase in oxidative stress can be damaging to your cardiovascular system. Therefore, blood donation reduces the risk of heart attacks and strokes.
Director of Regional Health Services, Jevaughn Stephen, after donating, remarked that the process was relatively short, simple and easy. A frequent donor, Stephen said he felt good about being able to help save lives. He is encouraging others to consider the same in an effort to saving lives.
The Region Six, Blood Donor Organiser, Candy Archer explained that with every organisation, hospital, group and individual that supports the blood bank not only assists them to reach their target but also helps to save lives. Archer further explained that the needs of Region Six fall in the range of 300 to 400 units of blood yearly, so the remainder of the blood garnered through blood drives is dispatched to the National Blood Bank where it is stored and distributed to other regions in need.