BANGKOK (NNT) - Supplies of blood in Thailand have reportedly run low, after donor numbers dropped by over 50 percent, with over 10,000 people suffering from thalassemia now under threat.

The Deputy Director of the National Blood Service Center of the Thai Red Cross Society, Pawinee Kupatawintu, explained that the center must acquire 2,500 units of blood per day to replenish its supplies. Donations have however dropped to only 1,000 units per day, threatening patients of thalassemia who require transfusions twice a month at a rate of two units per person. People with the condition who are unable to receive transfusions will experience a paling of the skin, fatigue and a lack of energy, with a prolonged shortage fatal to such patients.

Healthy individuals are urged to be confident in measures protecting them from the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) at blood donation centers and to resume making donations. Ms. Pawinee insisted that sterilization is routinely performed at blood donation venues and no cases of COVID-19 contraction have been found from blood donations.

Mahasarakham Hospital recently took donations from the 6th Infantry Regiment at Phutthayotfa Chulalok Camp, subjecting donors to rigorous safety measures, including temperature scans before taking blood.

The 7th Health Promotion Center has set up an ad hoc donation venue on the third floor of Kunakorn Piyachart Building at Khon Kaen Hospital to reduce congestion at its main building, and has also established a mobile team to handle those occasions when there are more than three donors waiting.

National News Bureau Of Thailand