SANBS needs blood urgently

The South African National Blood Service (SANBS) faces drought of its own, a lack of blood.

While the Western Cape battles a severe, prolonged drought, the rest of South Africa is currently facing scarcity of a different kind.

According to the SANBS, blood supply in South Africa has gone down to just 1.5 days of Group O stock.

The service is calling on all donors to come forward to donate blood urgently to stop cancer sufferers, people in life-threatening situations and anyone else who needs or relies on blood transfusions.

“The blood stock is dangerously low,” Ms Silungile Mlambo, national marketing manager, said.

“A healthy blood stock is 5 000 units of O blood a day.

The situation, simply, is critical.

“We are appealing to South Africans, active donors, lapsed donors and potential donors, to stand together right now to bolster the national blood stock and thank them in advance for pulling together.”

Ms Mlambo also said blood is critical for cancer patients and women in childbirth, who constitute by far the greatest groups of people requiring blood transfusions.

According to her, so many people in life-threatening situations require blood and it’s what saves a haemorrhaging mother’s life.

“It’s what saves someone suffering complications during major surgery and helps cancer patients endure and survive treatment.”

The SANBS therefore urgently appeals to South Africans to step forward and donate blood immediately and also appeals to residents to become regular donors.

By donating blood only four times a year, situations such as these, can be avoided.

To find out more about donating blood and locate your nearest donor centre, visit or call 0800 11 90 31.

Marina Schoombee

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