SANBS: Your blood and organ donations save lives!

AUGUST 10, 2016

This month the South African National Blood Service (SANBS) shows its full support for the Organ Donor Foundation in its endeavour to educate the public about how they can play their part.

Along with being a blood donor SANBS encourages healthy donors to consider becoming an organ donor too. Donors can pledge to donate their organs – liver, pancreas, kidneys and lungs – and tissue, including corneas, skin, bone and heart valves. These help save thousands of lives each year.

Currently, some 4 300 South Africans are waiting for a life-saving organ transplant. Latest figures on organ donation show that 335 of the 566 transplants conducted in 2013 were solid organs most of which were related to the kidneys. In that year, 231 adults, adolescents and children had the miracle of sight restored through a cornea transplant.

Organ donation is one of the causes and collaborations that SANBS pursues because very few surgical transplant-related procedures can happen without the availability of an adequate blood supply.

“To make sure that these important procedures go ahead smoothly our blood stocks must always be in surplus. For that we need committed donors of all blood types to honour their regular donation dates,” says SANBS spokesperson Vanessa Raju.

A supply shortage for SANBS could endanger many lives as the blood collected by SANBS supports crucial and often life-threatening surgeries. It also supports many people who suffer from various blood-related diseases like aplastic anaemia and who need blood regularly in order to live relatively healthy lives. 

In addition, blood is frequently needed to support women during childbirth as complications can cause excessive bleeding.

“The donation of human tissue of any kind is unlike other acts of volunteerism and should not be taken lightly. That’s why at SANBS we respect and appreciate every donor who walks into one of our donor centres,” emphasises Ms Raju.

SANBS encourages all South Africans to show their support for blood and organ donors and find out how they can become part of this life-changing movement.

To become a blood donor contact SANBS on http://www.sanbs.org.za/ and for more information on organ donation visit: www.odf.org.za