The Sunday Mail
Zimbabwe’s blood bank is running low of the most common blood group — group O RhD positive due to soaring demand for the life-saving fluid, with current stocks only able to cover an average five days’ supply at any given time.
National Blood Service Zimbabwe (NBSZ) public affairs manager Ms Esther Massundah recently told The Sunday Mail that the organisation relies solely on blood donations from the general public.
“For us to remain adequately stocked, we solely rely on blood donors and the general public to donate blood,” she said.
“Blood only comes from the human body and as such, if people do not come forward to donate, there will be no blood available.
“All blood types are available, but more stocks are however needed for group O Rhesus Positive (O RhD positive) as the blood type is on high demand and we have been running on about five days’ supply.”
There are generally four main blood groups — A, B, AB and O.
In cases where blood has a protein known as the RhD antigen, it is classified as RhD positive, and vice versa. An antigen is a toxin or any other foreign substance that induces an immune response in the body.
Blood transfusion is usually administered on accident victims who would have lost a lot of blood, or on women after child birth.
Last year, Government decided that blood from public health institutions and mission hospitals be provided for free. Before government’s intervention, one had to pay an average of $254 for a bottle of blood transfusion.