IWD: Blood donation drive launched to save mothers

Written By: Margaret Kalekye

Excessive bleeding after childbirth is the leading cause of maternal deaths in the country, accounting for 34pc of all maternal deaths in Kenya.

The Kenya National Blood Transfusion Services has partnered with the Coalition of Blood for Africa (CoBA) for a three days blood drive to collect 3000 units of blood to contribute towards treatment of post-partum hemorrhage among Kenyan mothers.

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The campaign dubbed ‘Keep Mothers Alive’ will run in 33 sites across the country from Sunday 7th March- Tuesday 9th March to mark International Women’s Day.

According to the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health, excessive bleeding after childbirth is the leading cause of maternal deaths in the country, accounting for 34pc of all maternal deaths in Kenya.

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“We encourage members of the public to come out in large numbers to donate blood. We are doing the blood collection in line with the COVID-19 protocols,” said Dr Nduku Kilonzo, Head, Kenya National Blood Transfusion Services.

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At least 60 pc of all blood collected in Kenya is required for maternal health services.

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“It is important for members of the public to become regular blood donors to ensure availability of adequate blood supplies in health facilities that treat expectant mothers,” said Richard Kiplagat, Head of CoBA secretariat.

CoBA is a multi-stakeholder platform comprised of public and private sector, research, academia, not-for-profits, civil society and others committed to strengthening blood and blood systems in Sub-Saharan Africa.

It aims to crowd-in resources and investment for research, advocacy and action to drive the agenda for adequate, safe and sustainable blood in Sub- Saharan Africa.

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The ‘Keep Mothers Alive’ campaign is supported by the Ministry of Health, Council of Governors and County Governments, CoBA, UNFPA, Kenya Red Cross, AMREF Health, OptionsUK, Bidco Africa, Lwala Community Alliance, Lifebank, Maisha Youth, Pledge 25, LVCT Health, Terumo Cell and Blood Technologies, Global Blood Fund, Ogilvy Africa and Africa Practice.

 

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