World Blood Donor Day

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Every year countries around the world celebrate World Blood Donor Day (WBDD). The event serves to raise awareness of the need for safe blood and blood products and to thank voluntary, unpaid blood donors for their life-saving gifts of blood.

A blood service that gives patients access to safe blood and blood products in sufficient quantity is a key component of an effective health system. The global theme of World Blood Donor Day changes each year in recognition of the selfless individuals who donate their blood to people unknown to them.

Safe blood and blood products and their transfusion are critical aspects of care and public health. They save millions of lives and improve the health and quality of life of many patients every day. The need for blood is universal, but access to blood for all those who need it is not. Blood shortages are particularly acute in developing countries. Blood transfusion is an indispensable component of health care. It contributes to saving millions of lives each year in both routine and emergency situations, permits increasingly complex medical and surgical interventions and dramatically improves the life expectancy and quality of life of patients with a variety of acute and chronic conditions.

The aim is to raise global awareness of the need for safe blood and blood products for transfusion and of the critical contribution voluntary, unpaid blood donors make to national health systems. The day also provides an opportunity to call to action to governments and national health authorities to provide adequate resources and put into place systems and infrastructures to increase the collection of blood from voluntary, non-remunerated blood donors.

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