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Blood shortage hits patients

Blood shortage hits patients
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Highlights

Due to the shortage of blood reserves, thousands of patients are suffering and their relatives are forced to run around blood banks in the city.  In several cases, patients died due to the severe shortage of blood, particularly in the Agency and rural areas.  Unless there is a recommendation at higher levels, collecting blood for the poor has become extremely difficult in several private and gover

Visakhapatnam: Due to the shortage of blood reserves, thousands of patients are suffering and their relatives are forced to run around blood banks in the city. In several cases, patients died due to the severe shortage of blood, particularly in the Agency and rural areas. Unless there is a recommendation at higher levels, collecting blood for the poor has become extremely difficult in several private and government hospitals located in the city.

Thousands of patients are coming from the neighbouring districts and also from Odisha and Chhattisgargh for medical treatment as in-patients. According to the medical and health department estimations, a total of 1.45 lakh units of blood are required. However, the five major blood banks were able to collect 90 to one lakh units of blood only every year.

Highlights:

  • Unless there is a recommendation at higher levels, collecting blood for the poor has become extremely difficult in several private and government hospitals located in the city
  • According to the medical and health department estimations, a total of 1.45 lakh units of blood are required. However, the five major blood banks are able to collect 90 to one lakh units of blood only every year
  • Medical and health department officials blamed their counterparts in Vizianagaram and Srikakulam districts for scarcity
  • Blood reserves are more than enough to attend to the requirement of Visakhapatnam district patients, but a large number of patients from other districts are coming to the city for advanced treatment. Hence, finding blood has become difficult

Earlier, the district administration has taken up a massive campaign for donation of blood. As a result, the employees of all the government departments have donated blood. However, very few organisations are conducting the blood donation camps to meet the requirement of blood.

However, speaking to The Hans India here on Friday, the medical and health department officials blamed their counterparts in Vizianagaram and Srikakulam districts. "In fact, the blood reserves are more than enough to attend to the requirement of Visakhapatnam district patients.

However, a large number of patients from other districts are coming to the city for advanced treatment, finding blood has become difficult. The demand for blood is very high in the corporate hospitals as more number of patients flock there. The district administration should organise blood donation camps periodically. A number of tribal women patients are suffering in the rural areas due to the shortage of blood, Raghunatha Rao, a government doctor, lamented.

Blood banks are unable to collect blood as most of the donors are heavy smokers and consume liquor. The situation in the 1000-bed King George Hospital is even worse. According to the doctors of the KGH, on an average, the hospital needs about 20,000 to 25,000 units of blood per year, but every year, there is 30 per cent of shortage. The locals alleged that the blood banks have been giving the blood to the private hospitals on priority, on the recommendation of physicians.

"As a doctor, I am not supposed to divide the patients into government and private. It depends on emergency. But, it is true that some common people are facing problems in collecting blood. According to the present and future needs of the patients, more blood banks and advanced mobile blood banks should be set up in Visakhapatnam,” said a corporate hospital cardiac surgeon.

By VKL Gayatri

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