Azersun holds blood drive during Ramadan

August 22, 2010

Courtesy by:

The Azersun Holding began its fourth annual Ramadan blood drive today.

Employees of the Imishly Sugar Plant, Bilasuvar Canning Factory, Natural Greenland and A.S.I.B. – Agro took part in the campaign, Azersun told Trend

The blood drive was organized together with the Health Ministry under the slogan, “Donate Blood, Save Lives.” The campaign aims to help patients suffering from thalassemia.

A similar blood drive was held on Fight Thalassemia Day in May. Over 200 Azersun employees took part in the campaign.

Pearl City Woman’s Rare Blood Saves Lives

July 7, 2010


Leslie Tanoue has been giving blood since the early 1990s. On Saturday she reclined at the Blood Bank of Hawaii, clutching a red squeeze toy shaped like a blood drop. She says it was probably the 70th time she has donated.

Her O-type blood has antigens that match those of people suffering from a condition known as Thalassemia, a blood disorder that requires patients to have frequent transfusions to keep them alive.

“Every time she donates she probably helps save up to three lives. Her red cells go to someone who has Thalassemia and the other products can go to somebody else,” said Dr. Randal Covin, Blood Bank of Hawaii associate director.

Leslie said it’s a good feeling to come in and provide something that can save someone’s life. And she was thankful she could do it.

“It’s nice that you can help somebody. You don’t know who it is, but you’re helping somebody. You hope that it never has to be your own family or you yourself. I’m lucky,” Tanoue said.

The Blood Bank of Hawaii was urging people to come donate over the Fourth of July holiday.

Mobilink arranges blood donation

August 22, 2009

Courtesy by:

KARACHI: Mobilink, a subsidiary of Orascom Telecom, organised blood donation drives at its offices nationwide for children suffering from Thalassemia and other blood diseases.

In total, more than 200 pints of blood were donated to Fatimid Foundation in Karachi and Lahore along with similar healthy blood donations to Sundas Foundation in Islamabad.

Organised under the auspices of Mobilink Foundation, employees were driven with the common goal of providing Thalassemics a chance to live with an improved quality of life. A pint of blood generally suffices three patients adding approximately two to six weeks in their lives. The contribution marks a commitment to societal and communal well-being.

Mobilink appreciated the work of Fatimid and Sundas Foundation for playing a very positive and supportive role in saving innocent lives and facilitating free of cost transfusion and treatment to needy children.

Life Blood

August 17, 2009

Courtesy by:

For this man who has organised over 300 blood donation drives after losing his son to thalassemia, blood is not thicker than water

It was a response to a personal challenge that later turned into a charity drive. Ashok Khatuja, 58, got involved with blood donations after his experience, as a worried father, trying to find blood donors for his son, who was suffering from thalassemia. The traffic inspector with Western Railway suddenly realised how difficult it was for some Mumbaiites to find blood donors. “Ravi needed 12 bottles year early on. Later as he grew, he needed three bottles a month. He passed away in December 2004, at the age of 24 years. But those years helped me see the problems of other parents whose children are suffering from similar diseases,” Khatuja says.

In March 1987, he organised his first blood donation camp at Dadar railway station, for St George Hospital, specifically to help thalassemic children. “From that camp, we collected 300 bottles,” Khatuja remembers.

Having joined the railways in November 1971 as a train clerk, Khatuja earlier organised camps with organisations that work for the welfare of children suffering from thalassemia. But four years ago, he formed his own group called the Western Railway Social Service Group with the support of then general manager MZ Ansari.

“Our first camp was organised on April 7, 2005 and since then, we have organised more than 300 camps and collected 25,000 bottles of blood. Earlier, we would collect about 2,000 bottles every year but for the past three years, we’ve been collecting 5,000 bottles a year,” he says, adding that he enjoys tremendous support from senior officers, deputy chief operations manager SK Jha who is the group’s president.

The group’s work has led to several staffers of the railway becoming regular donors, including Chief commercial manager NC Sinha and senior medical officer Dr Uma Jindal.

“There are many blood donors who call me once every three months and ask where they can donate blood,” Khatuja says, all praise for his co-workers and seniors. In fact, from across the country, railway officials not only appreciate his work but even call when blood has to be arranged in emergencies.

“A chief operations manager in Secunderabad once called requesting for help in arranging 14 bottles of blood for his wife who was getting a liver transplant. Similarly, three years ago, a station master in Ratlam needed 20 bottles since he was to undergo a bypass surgery.”

Khatuja has a word of caution too, advising that people should donate blood with the assurance that it will be for the use of a patient somewhere, rather than for sale to blood banks.

“I always conduct my camps for government units, where they give blood free to all blood donors and charge non-donors only Rs 425 a bottle. Some private units sell blood at Rs 2,000 a bottle or more.”

With a couple of years to go for retirement, Khatuja hopes to continue serving people in the memory of his son. “Because I know others need me too.”

A story of giving: Donate time, marrow to save a life

August 17, 2009

Courtesy by:

7/29/2009 – JOINT BASE MCGUIRE-DIX-LAKEHURST, N.J. — The C.W. Bill Young Department of Defense Marrow Donor Program first contacted me while I was at the Basic Instructor Course down at Sheppard, AFB.

The center contacted me and said I was a potential match for an 18-month-old boy with Beta Thalassemia, an inherited blood disorder that reduces the production of hemoglobin (the part of red blood cells that carry oxygen). It really caught me by surprise and did not remember registering for the DoD Bone Marrow Program five years earlier.

Once I was initially identified, the donor center sent a kit to Sheppard and the lab there took a little blood from me to check for disease and to find out if I was a good match. A “good match,” is where the donor and the recipient match at the genetic level. Because of this requirement, only about 2 percent of registered donors make it far enough to actually have an opportunity to donate. I gave my samples and waited for about three weeks.

I was the best match but the little boy was too sick to receive my donation. I was disappointed because I felt strangely close to him and wanted to give him a chance. Three years later, I received another call. This time it was an adult male withChronic Lymphocytic Leukemia. I was again excited. I thought, “I have a chance to do something amazing and save a life.”

I felt like an old pro. They sent the sample kit to McGuire AFB, where I was stationed this time, and I gave my blood and patiently waited for the results. I received another letter stating that I was again the best match but the recipient was unable to receive my transplant. I was beginning to think that the letter I received was the center’s way of making me feel better.

As it turned out, I was the best match! This time I spoke with a senior coordinator and her tone was much different from the others I had spoken with. It was not that the others were not professional or purposeful; but this new coordinator had an excitement in her voice. She informed me that we had to move quickly before the recipient’s health declined too much more.

As it turned out, when I was first identified, he was in treatment to manage his illness and was in a weakened state. However, the treatment was successful enough to buy him enough time to receive a transplant.

The program does not cost the donor anything. The center pays for hotel, travel and $50 a day for food per person. They flew me to Washington D.C. and put my wife and me in a great hotel. I donated peripheral blood stem cells as opposed to a traditional marrow transplant. PBSC donation requires the donor to take Filgrastim, a medication used to stimulate the donor’s marrow growth. I took this for five days and donated on the fifth day.
The bonus to all of this was that I felt good enough to enjoy the sites of D.C. I saw the doctor each morning for 30 minutes then I had the days and nights to myself. On that fifth day, I went in early to take the medicine and to prep for the donation. It was surprisingly easy and they accommodate you very well. The process, called apheresis, consists of blood being drawn from one arm and spun in a machine. The machine separates the PBSC from the plasma and collects it. Everything else, whole blood etc., returns to you through your other arm. The entire process takes a few hours, and my wife and staff made it easy. I spent one more night in D.C. to recover and went home.

All told, I spent seven nights in D.C. all paid for by the donation center. I waited a couple of months then I asked my coordinator if she had a status of my recipient. I was ecstatic to find out he was released from the hospital and he was in full remission. That was six days before Christmas in 2008.

When I got home later that day, I told my wife the good news. She said, “Now he gets another Christmas with his family and you gave him that chance.” It really occurred to me at that moment of what I did. I gave a little time, was uncomfortable for a couple weeks and the result was he got at least one more Christmas.

Thalassemia: Blood donation holds the key

May 15, 2009

Courtesy by:

BHUBANESWAR: The social problems associated with thalassemia must be addressed first as availability of blood for transfusion still remains a challenge for the thalassemics.

People with thalassemia suffer from mild or severe anaemia and the condition is caused by a low red blood cell count. As the world celebrates International Thalassemia Day today, the emphasis should be more on blood donation, says blood bank officer of the Capital Hospital Dr Debasish Mishra.

‘‘Though the medical data is not completely available, we are having more than 600 patients in Orissa with majority from the coastal belt and most are depending on blood transfusion ranging from one, two and three units per month’’, he informs.

However, on prevention of the disease, he says pre-marital/pre-conceptual or early pregnancy screening followed by marriage counselling and ante-natal diagnosis can play decisive role.

Haematologist  says though anemia is the major concern, parents must be on alert regarding slow growth and delayed puberty, bone problems, enlarged spleen, liver or heart, a poor and pale appearance, poor appetite, dark urine and jaundice and consult the doctors immediately.

Meanwhile, the Red Cross Day was celebrated here today and coinciding with the concerns of the thalassemics a blood donation camp organised on the occasion and over 60 units of blood were collected.

Defying the heatwave conditions people attended the camp, informs Dr Mishra adding some even made it happen on their birthday today as a gift to the society.

Doctors donate blood for thalassemics

May 15, 2009

Courtesy by:

Ludhiana In view of 18th International Thalassemia Day, the departments of Transfusion Medicine and Pediatrics jointly organized 10th annual medicos voluntary blood donation camp today at Dayanand Medical College and Hospital.

The camp got started with an impressive inaugural ceremony, where Prem Gupta, Secretary of DMCH Managing Society, DMCH, was the chief guest while Principal of DMCH Dr Daljit Singh was and the guest of honour.About 150 units of blood were collected during the camp.

The day is observed all over the world to commemorate the death anniversary of George Englesoz of Cyprus, who died at a young age of 26. Despite being a thalassemic, he was an active member of Thalassemic International Federation and worked tirelessly for the welfare of thalassemic patients all over the world.

The president of Punjab Thalassemia Welfare Society, Rama Kapoor elaborated on the functioning of the society and monetary and other benefits being provided to the thalassemic children by the society

Professor and Head of Transfusion Medicine, Dr Amarjit Kaur extended a warm welcome to the dignitaries, faculty, voluntary blood donors, NGOs including Rashmi Karwa, Social Welfare Society, Mandi Ahmedgarh, Salaam Zindagi and Har Har Astha Sewa Parivar and thalassemic children present on the occasion. She appreciated the active involvement of medical professionals in voluntary donating the blood for this noble cause. A group of thalassemic children also put up a solo and group song performance.

Professor of Pediatrics and In-charge of Thalassemia Unit at DMCH, Dr Parveen C Sobti proposed a vote of thanks to those present on the occasion. She informed that presently, Thalassemia Unit at DMCH was catering to the need of 215 children, who were regularly getting blood transfusions. She expressed her deepest gratitude to those organizations and welfare societies who have contributed a lot for championing the noble cause of thalassemic children.

The faculty who donated blood started with Medical Suptd, Dr Sandeep Puri, who holds the distinction of being the leading blood donor from DMCH faculty and was honoured with a gold medal on the occasion.The regular faculty members include Dr Gautam Ahluwalia, Dr Navjot K. Bajwa, Dr GS Bajwa, Dr Rajesh Arya, Dr PPS Gill and Dr Gautam Biswas.

Contribution of the staff of Transfusion Medicine Department was also acknowledged for their round-the-clock working to meet the demand of blood and blood components. The monetary contributions were made by Sunila Gupta, Mrs Rama Munjal and Mrs Nandita Gupta for the treatment of those thalassemic children whose parents were not able to bear the cost of their medical treatment.

%d bloggers like this: