Rwandan Soldiers Turn to Blood Donation Campaign

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By Kalinda Brenda

The Rwandan Army has launched a blood donation campaign to save citizens at a time when there is severe blood shortage currently experienced by the National blood bank.

Nearly 450 army personnel, both commissioned and non-commissioned officers this January 13, 2017 donated blood at the kick-off of the campaign at Kanombe hospital in Kigali city.

The exercise was conducted by Medical Staff from Kanombe military hospital, together with the National Blood Transfusion Service under the Ministry of Health and witnessed by General Patrick Nyanvumba, the Chief of Defense Staff (CDS) and Dr. Patrick Ndimubanzi, the state minister for health.

Dr. Ndimubanzi hailed the armed forces for the role in the blood donation campaign which is expected to be a drive in the increase of blood in hospitals.

“We are glad the public has developed a positive attitude toward blood donation to save lives.” Dr. Patrick said adding that throughout 2015, 53,439 blood units were collected from voluntary donors.

Lt Col Rene Ngendahimana, Army Spokesperson of the Rwanda Defense Force (RDF) said that the campaign- which started in Gako military school and officially launched at Kanombe hospital will be extended to other military schools.

“We are extending it to other military academies like Kami, Bigogwe, Mukamira and Gabiro.”

Blood donation is considered a noble act of humanity which helps ease the shortage of blood for patients, sharing difficulties with them and their families.

Ministry of health data shows that more than 40,000 people receive blood every year; but says that although the available blood does satisfy the demanded amount there is hope for hospital supply which has gone up from 78% in 2015 to 87% in 2016.

Statistics also show that for the past three years 40,000 blood units were given in 2014, 53,000 blood units in 2015 and 60,000 blood units in 2016.







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