50 units for Blood Bank
National Blood Transfusion Service (Blood Bank) collected 50 units at the General Accident Insurance Company Jamaica (GenAc) blood drive on Tuesday, June 15, 2021.
The draw was accomplished with units donated by GenAc and AutoSmart staff members, the support of staff from the Musson Group of Companies and clients.
“We collected 50 pints of blood from a total 81 persons registered, 45 of whom were staff members, and we are so proud of the team who came out to support the Blood Bank,” said Lesley Miller, chief information officer at GenAc.
Dr Sidni Fullerton, doctor on call at the blood drive, revealed that there is a national disparity in persons giving blood.
“There are more women attempting to give blood than men. Due to menses [however] many women’s blood count is too low for them to give blood. This is why we have to encourage men to attempt to give blood more as their blood count is usually normal,” said Dr Fullerton.
She said the benefits for blood donors are multilayered.
“Each person donating blood is screened to ensure suitability and the process can reveal potential health problems. We can find low blood count and an elevated blood pressure which can be unnoticed in persons until they develop severe complications. You will also get a free STD screen on your blood which is beneficial as some persons are sometimes asymptomatic and this screen could be a way for you to find out about a STD and get treated.” Dr Fullerton said. “Additionally, [blood donation] reduces the risks of heart and liver disease and even cancer. It also helps to maintain body weight as it burns calories and it also improves mental wellbeing as you will feel a sense of satisfaction from being able to help someone in need.”
From the 50 units collected at the GenAc Blood Drive, the Blood Bank can save up to 150 lives.
“It is so important that we all do what we can to help each other during what continues to be a very challenging year,” said Melanie Subratie, chairperson of Musson Foundation. “Giving blood saves lives.”
GenAc hosted the blood drive in partnership with the Musson Foundation, ShopBox and Nupak.
After what was deemed a success, Miller said she was stressed being heartened by the participation of the staff.
“Their effort shows their generosity, selflessness, and dedication to helping others. Those are remarkable traits,” Miller said. “The real winners are the patients in need of blood. Their efforts are truly appreciated by the blood recipients, their loved ones and all of us here at General Accident.”