THE Northern Zone Blood Transfusion Centre (NZBTC), has set a target of collecting 17,000 units of blood a year.
This was explained by the NZBTC Blood Donor Recruiter, Feisal Abubakar, during a blood donation exercise which was conducted by members of the Savings and Credit Co-operative Society of the Northern Diocese of Evangelical Lutheran Church of Tanzania (ELCT-ND Saccos), which was held in Moshi, recently.
"In achieving this goal, we have set various goals, including collecting 100 units of blood every day and monthly target of collecting 1,200 units of blood," he said.
He said in making sure that the exercise became successful, NZBTC embarked on various efforts which he said included mobilizing 'wananchi' while at the same time educating them on the benefits of donating blood to the needy.
"In secondary schools, for example, many students showed their interest to donate blood, but their ages become a barrier due to the fact that one who is allowed to donate blood should be aged 18 years and above," he said.
He described another challenge where some of the people have misconceptions that by donating blood one would be subject to side effects, something which he said was not true.
"Before a person donates blood, there are various health measures being considered, including ensuring the health of a person who wants to donate blood is good, so the issue of side effects is not there," he said.
He added, "However, despite these challenges, it is encouraging to see that people have begun to understand the importance of donating blood, although the number of emerging ones is still small compared to the targets that have been set," he said.
One of the ELCT-ND officials, Mr. Victor Mshana, said that they have decided to donate blood as part of the members' Family Day celebrations so that the donated blood could help patients who need blood in their different treatments.