SANBS aims to keep blood flowing during lockdown

SANBS aims to keep blood flowing during lockdown

The South African National Blood Service (SANBS) says it's concerned that their blood stock may run low as South Africa enters a three-week national lockdown.

SANBS - World Blood Donor Day
Jarryd Subroyen

President Cyril Ramaphosa ordered residents to stay indoors for 21 days while the government rushes to contain the spread of coronavirus.


Exceptions will only be made for essential services, but SANBS chief marketing officer Silungile Mlambo fears people might not prioritise their service.


"We do anticipate a decline in blood stocks but we are encouraged by the fact that donating blood is considered to be essential in the country so donors will be allowed to leave their home to donate blood.


"The need for blood doesn't stop so as you know everyday there are patients who require blood transfusions, so it's important that we keep enough stock just to be able to meet the daily demand in the country."


SAMA: You must show symptoms for testing

SAMA chairperson Angelique Coetzee says in future it will no longer be a prerequisite for a person to have been in contact with someone who has the virus. "Now you must have three of the five symptoms, it is the fever, dry cough, not the flame cough that comes from the sinuses and proper body pain.

Mlambo urged potential blood donors to book an appointment prior to making their way to one of their centres.


"That we way we hope the authorities won't give them any trouble if they have this SMS."


She adds that all centres will ensure the safety of staff and donors coming through their doors.


"We've also taken precautionary measures to make sure that donors are safe when they come to donate blood and they do not contract the Covid-19 disease."

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