Opav, DOH-Central Visayas launch blood donation campaign

WOULD you like to help save lives?

Then, be among the blood donors in the ongoing Donate Blood! Save Lives! donation campaign launched by the Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas (Opav), the Department of Health (DOH)-Central Visayas and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

Opav, together with the DOH-Central Visayas and DSWD, is conducting a series of Mobile Blood Donation activities in the different barangays in the cities of Cebu, national government offices, Philippine National Police, Armed Forces of the Philippines and the private sector, said Secretary Michael Lloyd Dino, presidential assistant for the Visayas.

Citing the rise in the number of coronavirus disease (Covid-19) cases and expected surge in dengue cases with the onset of the rainy season, Dino emphasized the need to have an adequate supply of blood.

“This is to ensure that patients, who might be needing blood, especially during this rainy season when dengue cases are expected to surge, can still have access to safe blood, which is an essential life-saving resource,” he said.

In January and February this year, the top three areas in Central Visayas as far as the number of dengue cases is concerned are Cebu City (696), Lapu-Lapu City (568) and Mandaue City (286).

“Blood as a precious commodity cannot be disregarded. Our patients continue to require blood, and supply must not run out. That is why we have decided to make this launching as the first of many more mobile blood donation activities in the coming days. With your support, together, we can make a difference,” Dino said during Wednesday's (July 8) launching of the Donate Blood! Save Lives! campaign.

On the other hand, with the rise in the number of Covid-19 cases, the blood donation campaign becomes doubly important as the requirement for plasma is expected to increase.

“Furthermore, this initiative (blood donation campaign) also aims to collect blood units with high levels of IgG from recovered post-Covid patients as we support Convalescent Plasma Therapy for severe and critical Covid-19 cases,” Dino said.

The team of Dr. Edgar Tan at the Cebu Doctors’ University Hospital has succeeded in treating critically ill Covid-19 patients using three-step regimen, Total Plasma Exchange, Convalescent Plasma Therapy and Blood Transfusion.

“This has been dubbed as a miracle in Cebu,” he said.

Dino also expressed thanks to the health care workers and other frontliners, who even with their lives at risk, have continued to fight against the pandemic.

“There is really nothing we can’t overcome if we are optimistic and determined, and my only wish is that we remain united,” Dino said. “So once again to our people: Donate blood, save a life, be a hero. Together, we heal as one.”

Since the start of the pandemic, Opav has been coming up with initiatives to address the various concerns in the Covid-19 pandemic.

These include providing free transportation to frontliners by deploying Malasakit buses and augmenting the testing capacity in the Visayas early on in the pandemic by providing PCR and automated extraction machines, extraction and detection kits, swab kits and other consumables.

Opav has also been coordinating with the national government agencies and local government units for the setting up of quarantine and isolation facilities to prepare for the repatriation of over 2,000 overseas Filipino workers and locally stranded individuals. (PR)


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