Shimla: Umang Foundation, a pioneer organization promoting blood donation movement in Himachal Pradesh, and the blood bank authority of Deen Dayal Upadhyay (DDU) Zonal Hospital, Shimla, are at loggerheads over the dumping of blood collected over a period of time.
Ajai Srivastava, chairman of the foundation, sought Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh intervention and demanded an inquiry into the dumping of 21 blood units. He alleged
“Twenty one units of blood were thrown in to the dustbin by DDU Hospital Blood Bank between 25th March and 3rd May, 2016. This entire lot of blood was not infected at all. The reason for discarding the lifesaving fluid was recorded as ‘outdated’. It is a heinous crime to destroy blood when there is always scarcity of it and voluntary blood donors donate it selflessly with only motive to save precious lives. It is cheating with the thousands of donors like me who has donated blood 87 times.”
Srivastava said that the shelf life of blood is 35 days and the discarded units got expired in the DDU blood bank by the criminal negligence of authorities. The DDU Hospital is merely 30 minutes away from the Indira Gandhi Medical College Hospital where blood could have been easily transferred and consumed because there was requirement of 40 to 60 units per day. But no such effort was made by DDU Blood Bank, he added. He said atleast six units of blood would go to dustbin tomorrow.
Ajai Srivastava suggested closing the Blood Banks at DDU Hospital and Kamla Nehru Hospital and starting storage centres at both places because the consumption blood in the both hospital is very less.
“The government should utilize the medical and paramedical staff in strengthening the bigger blood bank at IGMC which was suffering from scarcity of staff,” he further added.
He also asked the health authorities to promote component therapy for the optimum use of life fluid by separating it in different components.
At present only three hospitals – IGMC, Tanda Medical College and Mandi Hospital have this facility which was in use at very small level. The life of all blood components except platelets is more than that of whole blood. Moreover it will decrease the pressure of donating blood on the donors as the components could be given to 3-4 different patients.
However, blood bank authority has refuted the allegations and claimed that collected blood units were unfit for patient use as it was found infected due to jaundice outbreak, and were destroyed with a set procedure.