SANBS calls on public to donate blood, says vaccinated donors welcome

The service generally relies on collecting 60% of its blood via mobile drives, but this has since been limited as a result of the pandemic.

Picture: Freeimages.com

CAPE TOWN - The South African National Blood Service (SANBS) said that the number of blood donors has decreased by 20% over the past financial year.

The blood service is one of many sectors where the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic continues to be felt.

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The service generally relies on collecting 60% of its blood via mobile drives, but this has since been limited as a result of the pandemic. Medical director, Dr Karin van den Berg, said that the demand outstripped the supply.

“Our donor base or the number of people who donated at least 12 months or so, decreased by about 20% over the last financial year,” she said.

Van den Berg said that donors who had been vaccinated need not steer clear of their nearest blood bank, as studies had shown that the COVID-19 jabs benefited both donors and recipients.

Those who had been in contact with a COVID-19 positive case or were displaying flu symptoms would need to wait 14 days before donating.

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