In the midst of global instability caused by COVID-19, the murder of George Floyd and numerous other problems facing humanity, Indus Hospital has arranged for a system through which residents of Karachi, Bahawalpur and Multan can save up to three human lives per person from the comfort of their own home.
What is the campaign?
Hospitals throughout the world, especially in Pakistan, are facing chronic shortages of blood due to limited supply and immense demand. Due to the current coronavirus outbreak, people are even more hesitant to donate blood due to the effort involved in going all the way to a blood centre for a fifteen minute blood donation, Realising this, Indus Hospital has established a mobile blood donation system, which equips a number of buses with beds and blood donation apparatus. The buses then go to whichever organisation, school or community requested their presence; effectively setting up a system through which people can save up to three human lives from wherever they choose.
How does it work?
Residents of Karachi, Bahawalpur and Multan can contact Indus Hospital at designated hotlines (mentioned below) and arrange for a blood drive at their community or organisation. Given the immense shortage of blood at the moment caused by canceled blood donation camps due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Indus Hospital prefers to go to communities wherein they can get as much blood as possible; giving larger communities a chance to play their role.
Should you donate?
The campaign allows you to save up to three human lives. Indus Hospital is also offering people making blood donations a free blood analysis report, which tests for HIV, syphilis and malaria, and measuring the haemoglobin count. Collectively, these tests can cost thousands of rupees, but Indus Hospital is conducting them for free, to encourage people to donate blood. The donation drive can also provide an opportunity to boost a feeling of community, when everyone has been feeling isolated due to quarantine.
What about the coronavirus and social distancing?
With its own doctors on the frontlines against the pandemic, the hospital states it is following all SOPs issued by both the WHO and the federal and local governments to prevent coronavirus transmission. The team in charge of the blood donation is also completely separate from the team combating the pandemic, to limit exposure. The hospital states that it maintains social distancing at all times, beds are sanitised after every donation, body temperature is checked prior to donation, and travel history and demographics are assessed. A stringent criteria for donating blood is used taking into account height, weight, prior medication, current symptoms and various other factors to ensure that blood donation is carried out in a safe manner.