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UN Supports Blood Transfusion In Cameroon

blood bags
Blood Bags

On the occasion of World Blood Donor Day on 14 June, the United Nations Population Fund UNPF office in Cameroon handed over a batch of blood transfusion equipment worth US$ 385,850 (more than 242 million FCFA) to the Ministry of Public Health .

This donation consists of 34 containers of blood bags, 4 freezers for storing bags of fresh plasma frozen at -37°C, 4 refrigerated centrifuges, 34 blood bank refrigerators and 21 stationary blood collection chairs, Unpf said in a press release.

The equipment was handed over under the Support Project for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health  financed by the Islamic Development Bank (IDB). Its aim is to contribute to the reduction of maternal, neonatal and infant mortality in the Far North, North, Adamaoua, East and Central regions. “The permanent availability of blood products, as well as blood transfusion capacities in health facilities, especially in maternity wards, is necessary to accelerate actions to eradicate maternal mortality in Cameroon. Cameroonian women must be able to proudly carry a pregnancy without risking death in the process of giving life,” said Noemi Dalmonte, Unfpa Cameroon desk officer, quoted in the release.

Despite a 40% drop in the maternal mortality ratio, nearly 4,000 pregnant women die each year while giving birth in Cameroon (DHS 2018), a figure largely due to the shortage of safe blood. Blood transfusion is crucial, as it is used to save the lives of women who suffer severe bleeding during pregnancy or childbirth.

But the country meets less than 25% of the 400,000 blood bags needed to treat patients in health facilities each year, due to a lack of unpaid volunteer donors. The authorities are increasing their appeals to all Cameroonians to donate blood in order to reinforce the haemoglobin stocks.

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