The Department of Health on Wednesday announced that it has finally realized its goal of collecting one-million blood units, two decades after the National Blood Services Act of 1994 (Republic Act No. 7719) was signed into law.
Health Secretary Francisco T. Duque III said that “The Department of Health continues to promote the regular, year-round blood donation as a means to save lives.”
“We are immensely grateful to the blood donors for their voluntary and sincere effort to be of help to those in need. They truly are heroes in the lives of our recipients,” said Duque.
“We continue to enjoin all Filipinos to imbibe the spirit of bayanihan and be instrumental in saving more lives by donating blood today,” he added.
The DoH made the announcement in the wake of the global celebration of World Blood Donor Day in partnership with the World Health Organization, Philippine Red Cross, Philippine Blood Coordinating Council, Dugong Pinoy Association Inc., and Blood Galloners Club.
The celebration intends to recognize voluntary, unpaid blood donors for their gift of life-saving blood and to intensify awareness on the importance of regular blood donation to ensure the supply of safe blood for patients in need.
Last December 2017, the country’s goal to obtain the 1 percent (one-million blood units) blood collection from the total population was achieved and collected 1,120,408 blood units.
This represents a significant contribution to the global call for a 100-percent voluntary blood donation by the World Health Organization.
Duque said the Philippines joins the rest of the international community in celebrating the World Blood Donor Day with the theme, “Be there for someone else. Give blood. Share life.”
The event promotes blood donation as an act of solidarity that highlights the fundamental human values of altruism, respect, empathy, and kindness. The country adopts the local theme, “Dugong Bigay, Dugtong Buhay,” to get the message closer to more Filipinos and encourage the public to continuously donate blood to maintain a safe and adequate supply.
He noted that evidence has shown that transfusion of blood and blood products can help patients suffering from life-threatening conditions, such as anemia, severe liver disease, bleeding disorders, and surgical emergencies to live longer with a higher quality of life.
It also supports complex medical and surgical procedures. It also has an essential life-saving role in maternal and child care and during the emergency response to man-made and natural disasters.