Mbale, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Mbale regional blood bank in Mbale has run out of blood again for the second time since the COVID-19 lockdown started in March this year.
The regional blood bank suffered the first blood shortage few weeks after the closure of schools and suspension of public gatherings on March 18, 2020.
This prompted the management of the regional blood bank to start a door-to-door campaign requesting good samaritans to donate blood. The campaign yielded results and it saw the bank have excess blood which it even donated to Nakasero blood bank in Kampala.
Now, the blood bank which serves the Eastern regional districts has been hit with blood shortage again which has paralyzed the supply of blood in all health facilities within the region. The blood bank serves six sub regions of Bukedea, Teso, Bugisu, Karamoja, Busoga and Sebei.
Ahamed Bumba, the Director of Mbale blood Bank said that they expected to collect at least 4,000 units of blood in this month of July in ordered to sufficiently supply in all health facilities in the region, but they have only collected 1,600 units of blood.
He said that this is less than 50% of their target for the month and it has now become a problem for health facilities to access blood to offer to critically ill patients who need it adding that they have now dispatched teams to villages within the region to collect more blood.
Juliet Kakayi, the Human Resource Manager for Berakhah Child Care an Organisation which has partnered Mbale Regional Blood Bank to move in different districts to mobilise people to donate blood says that they have started engaging religious leaders starting with Mbale district to mobilise their followers to help in the donation of blood.
Patrick Wambi, a Pastor within Mbale town who donated blood urged others to embrace the donation excise such that they can save lives of others.
Stephen Watamba, a resident from Northern City Division and a blood donor urged management of different hospitals and health facilities to punish health workers who sell blood something that has discouraged people from donating blood.