KAMPALA – The National Social Security Fund (NSSF)’s annual countrywide blood donation drive is expected to add over 15,000 units of blood to the National Blood Bank, Managing Director Richard Byarugaba announced.
The drive, which kicked off on Monday, January 14, 2020, is aimed at boosting blood collection across the country.
It is being undertaken in partnership with the Uganda Blood Transfusion Services (UBTS) under the Ministry of Health and the Uganda Red Cross Society.
Mr. Byarugaba said that the Fund owes it to its members to contribute to meaningful social causes that affect them diversely. A potential blood shortage he said, affects everyone indiscriminately regardless of stature and standing in society.
“It is in light of this that I on behalf of NSSF and our partners- Ministry of Health and UBTS invite you all- all able-bodied adults, living in Uganda to participate in this noble life-giving exercise- that is taking place across at 23 locations across the country, starting today, Monday, 13th January 2020”.
“This time around, we aim to collect up to 15,000 units of blood in this 5-day campaign, to both bridge the annual blood supply deficit but also plug the recurring high demand for blood during the rainy season that is associated with the high disease incidences”.
For sustainability purposes, in the medium to long term, Byarugaba added, the NSSF Blood Drive campaign also seeks to inculcate a blood donation culture amongst Ugandans, thus enabling Uganda to sustainably meets the World Health Organisation recommended blood collection rates i.e. 10 whole blood units per 1,000 inhabitants
Convenience purposes,- for five (5) days and in the Kampala area alone, the fund has designated 10 locations i.e. City Square, Clock Tower, Mukwano Arcade, Sekaziga House, Goods Shade, Bwaise Roundabout, NSSF lobby at Workers House, William Street; Opposite Standard Chartered bank, KIbuye Roundabout and Nateete at Samona Building.
In Mukono, they will be at Sombe Supermarket and in Lugazi.
They will be at the NSSF office while in Entebbe, and Kitooro town.
Other towns are Hoima (Katikara Market), Masaka (Kirumba TC and Katwe TC), Jinja (Central Market), Mbarara (Independence Park Grounds) and Gulu (Gulu Main Market). In Lira we will be at Alebtong Ajuri Market, while Fort Portal, they will be at Mpanga Market, Bududa at Bududa Corner and Buwangani and then Nebbi at Pentagon Grounds.
All blood donations centres shall be open between 08:00 am and 06:00 pm.
Statistics from the World Health Organisation (WHO) indicate that Uganda has an annual demand of about 340,000 units of blood but falls short by over 100,000 units. Last year, only 240,000 units were collected against targeted 340,000 units in Uganda. This year, The Uganda Blood Bank is aiming to collect over 300,000 units of blood.