GUWAHATI, March 28 � Blood banks of Assam are still 30 per cent short of meeting the estimated 2,40,000 units of safe blood currently required for the State.
Although the rate of voluntary blood donation has witnessed an increase in the last 10 years, the State continues to lag behind the national rate of voluntary donation, which has crossed the 80 per cent mark. Assam is still hovering around the 70 per cent mark.
Experts believe that unless the State achieves self-sufficiency through voluntary blood donation, the danger of the poor falling prey to professional donors will always be there.
The ratio of voluntary donation to replacement donation in the 2014-15 stood at 65:35 (till December).
A performance report of all the blood banks of Assam reveals that the rate of voluntary donation had increased from 37,942 units in 2005-06 to 94,960 units in 2014-15 (till December).
As far as replacement donation is concerned, compared to 41,104 units of safe blood collected in 2005-06, the figure had risen to 52,953 units in the year 2014-15 (till December).
The overall collection of blood units (both voluntary and replacement) in the year 2014-15 (till December) rose to 1,47,913 units compared to 79,046 in the year 2005-06.
The performance output of the NACO-supported blood banks has been the maximum. Of the overall collection in the current year, 96,515 units were collected only through NACO-supported blood banks.
Dr NK Beria, Deputy Director, Blood Transfusion Services, Assam State AIDS Control Society (ASACS) when contacted said, �Although the trend of voluntary donation is encouraging, we want more and more voluntary donors. With the introduction of blood component separation facility, we can use one unit of blood for a number of persons. The facility is being replicated in a number of new hospitals�.
Additional Project Director of ASACS Dr Talukdar said, �More blood banks are coming up and we are hopeful of improving our stock. Awareness programmes are being organised from time to time to do away with the concept of professional donors.�