A selection of UN TV programmes, webcasts and video clips on issues in the news

Friday, 13 June 2014

World Blood Donor Day 2014, June 14.

World Blood Donor Day, Día Mundial del Donante de Sangre , Всемирный день донора крови, Journée Mondiale du Donneur de Sang, 世界献血者日, اليوم العالمي للمتبرعين بالدم , 

Forum of Discussions : 

Join the Forum, World Blood Donor Day, June 14th.

Public health context :

" An adequate supply of safe blood can only be assured through regular donations by voluntary unpaid blood donors."

Transfusion of blood and blood products helps save millions of lives every year. It can help patients suffering from life-threatening conditions live longer and with a higher quality of life, and can support complex medical and surgical procedures. It also has an essential, life-saving role in maternal and perinatal care.
However, in many countries, there is an inadequate supply of safe blood, and blood services face the challenge of making sufficient blood available while also ensuring its quality and safety. There is a marked difference in the level of access to safe blood between high- and low-income countries.
An adequate supply of safe blood can only be assured through regular donations by voluntary unpaid blood donors. These donors are the safest group of donors as the prevalence of bloodborne infections is lowest among this group. WHO’s goal is for all countries to obtain all their blood supplies from voluntary unpaid donors by 2020.
WHO recommends that every country should put in place policies, systems and structures to ensure the safety, quality, accessibility and timely availability of blood and blood products to meet the needs
of all patients who require transfusion. Policies should be supported by appropriate legislation to promote uniform implementation of standards and consistency in the quality and safety of blood and
blood products. All activities related to blood collection, testing, processing, storage and distribution should be coordinated at the national level through effective organization and management

Origins of the campaign :

" World Blood Donor Day is now celebrated every year throughout the world on 14 June."

The first World Blood Donor Day was observed in 2004, which was followed by its designation as an annual global event by the Fifty-eighth World Health Assembly (Resolution WHA58.13) in 2005.

World Blood Donor Day is now celebrated each year throughout the world on 14 June to raise awareness of the importance of blood donation and to recognize the contribution of voluntary unpaid blood donors in saving lives and improving health. World Blood Donor Day has a further purpose: to create wider awareness throughout the world about the need for availability and appropriate use of safe blood and blood products, and the need for many more people to make a commitment to regular voluntary unpaid blood donation.
The date of 14 June is the birthday of Karl Landsteiner (1868–1943), an Austrian biologist and physician, considered to be the “founder” of modern blood transfusion. Landsteiner discovered the ABO blood groups in 1901, developed the modern system of classification of blood groups, and identified, in 1937, together with Alexander S. Wiener, the Rhesus factor, thus enabling physicians to transfuse blood without endangering a patient’s life.

World Blood Donor Day provides a springboard for blood safety programmes and campaigns throughout the year, as well as wider activities to strengthen blood transfusion services. It is designed to complement rather than replace the national blood donor days or weeks that are organized in a number of countries. Some are held at the same time as World Blood Donor Day while others take place at different times of the year.

Objectives :
The objectives of this year’s campaign:

° Ministries of health, particularly in countries with high rates of maternal mortality, to take concrete steps towards ensuring that health facilities in their countries improve access to safe blood and blood products from volunteer donors for women giving birth.

° National blood services in countries with high rates of maternal mortality to focus on safe blood for mothers in their activities and products for the 2014 World Blood Donor Day campaign.

° Maternal health programmes and partnerships engage in the 2014 World Blood Donor Day campaign.

WHO and partners throughout the world highlight how safe blood from voluntary donors can save women’s lives everywhere.

Target audiences :

The primary target audiences for World Blood Donor Day are donors who regularly give blood and healthy people who are eligible to give blood but are not yet occasional or regular donors.
Health officials at national level who are responsible for setting national policy and systems for blood donation and transfusion are another important target audience.
International partners (see Box 1), national blood transfusion services, Red Cross societies, donor associations and professional societies each have an important role to play, both in supporting countries towards self-sufficiency in this area and in disseminating campaign messages.

Partners :
WHO has worked with a number of partners to promote voluntary blood donation through the celebration of World Blood Donor Day since the first one in 2004.
These include: the International Federation of Blood Donor Organizations, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, and the International Society of Blood Transfusion.

Theme :

The focus for this year’s campaign is “Safe blood for saving mothers”. The campaign will increase awareness about why timely access to safe blood and blood products is essential for all countries as part of a comprehensive approach to prevent maternal deaths.

WHO encourages all countries and national and international partners working on blood transfusion and maternal health to develop an activity plan to highlight the need for timely access to safe blood and blood products in the prevention of maternal deaths

Slogan : The slogan for the 2014 campaign is “Give blood for those who give life”.

Key messages :

Every day, about 800 women die from pregnancy or childbirth-related complications. Almost all of these deaths occur in developing countries. More than half of them occur in sub-Saharan Africa and almost one third in South Asia. The risk of maternal mortality is highest for adolescent girls under 15 years of age.
Severe bleeding during delivery or after childbirth is the commonest cause of maternal mortality and contributes to around 34% of maternal deaths in Africa, 31% in Asia and 21% in Latin America and the Caribbean. Severe bleeding during delivery and after childbirth is a major cause of mortality, morbidity and long-term disability. Blood transfusion has been identified as one of the nine key life-saving interventions for the management of pregnancy-related complications as part of a comprehensive approach to maternal and newborn care that should be available in all facilities providing comprehensive emergency obstetric care.

In 2014, more than 40 years after the first World Health Assembly resolution (WHA28.72) addressed the issue of blood safety, equitable access to safe blood and blood products and the rational and safe use of blood transfusion still remain major challenges throughout the world; and
many patients requiring transfusion, particularly mothers and children in developing countries, do not have timely access to safe blood.
WHO has been providing support for strengthening service delivery and safety for obstetric care including improving access to safe blood and blood products for women and children and improve collaboration with maternal and child health, HIV/AIDS and malaria programmes.

Campaign materials :

Files for poster, T-shirt, mug, pen, tag, hall banner, wallpaper, cap, advertisement banner, folder cover, button, and car stamp in English and French can be downloaded from the site. The poster and banner are also also available on the campaign website in Arabic, Chinese, Russian and Spanish languages.
Look out for news release about this year’s campaign and other related information on blood donation and transfusion on the campaign web site in the lead-up to World Blood Donor Day.

Global event :
The global host for the 2014 global World Blood Donor Day event is Sri Lanka. Through its national blood transfusion service, Sri Lanka has been promoting voluntary unpaid donation to increase access to safe and sufficient blood and blood products.

A global event will be held in Colombo on 14 June 2014.

The event will be held with high-level representation from the Government of Sri Lanka, Ministry of Health and National Blood Transfusion of Sri Lanka, WHO and partners working in the area of blood transfusion and maternal health. An international symposium on ‘Reducing maternal mortality through improved service delivery and access to safe blood for obstetric care’ will be held on 13 June 2014 in Colombo.

Get involved :
There are many ways to get involved in World Blood Donor Day. Here are some ideas.

° Participate in local events being organized to celebrate World Blood Donor Day.
° Give blood at your nearest blood collection centre.

Ministries of health
° Organize and participate in activities to celebrate World Blood Donor Day and promote voluntary unpaid blood donation to the public, across government and to other sectors.
° Speak to the media about the importance of blood donation and the successes and challenges of your country in meeting national needs of blood through voluntary unpaid donations in line with the theme of this year’s World Blood Donor Day.
° Distribute posters and leaflets about blood donation to health centres.

International organizations

° Provide updated information on blood transfusion and blood safety to your members.
° Organize or participate in international, national and local events.
° Urge media outlets to run special features and editorials on blood donation.

National blood transfusion services
° Organize blood collection drives.
° Invite prominent politicians, celebrities and sporting heroes to participate in World Blood Donor Day celebrations.
° Disseminate information about the importance of giving blood.
° Print out and distribute posters that you can download from the World Blood Donor Day campaign web site.
° Produce, display and disseminate promotional materials such as T-shirts, caps and car stickers.
° Hold a donor recognition awards ceremony to honour individuals and partner organizations who have made significant contributions to blood donation activities in your country.
° Hold open days at blood centres and invite the general public to learn about blood donation and blood transfusion.

° Broadcast messages and write articles about blood donation and the need for access to safe blood and blood products in the prevention of maternal deaths.
° Write articles about how close your country is to meeting national needs for blood through voluntary unpaid donations.
° Interview staff from the ministry of health and blood transfusion services.
° Write feature stories about people, particularly mothers, whose lives have been saved as a result of blood donation, or about people who are first-time donors, or have donated blood a record number Of times.
° Attend events organized to celebrate World Blood Donor Day and write about them.

Tell us about your events :

We appreciate hearing about events and activities that you are organizing. Let us, and others, know about your plans by registering your event through the following link:

Through social media channels
Closer to World Blood Donor Day, we will be linking to campaign materials through our Facebook page, YouTube channel and Google+. Through these channels, you can let us know how you will be involved too.

You can also follow us on Twitter@WHO. Join the conversation using the hashtag #GiveBlood (to confirm). Follow our World Blood Donor Day tweets and retweet those of interest to your own networks.

WHO contacts

Blood and Transfusion Safety Headquarters
Dr Neelam Dhingra

Dr Yetmgeta Abdella

Regional Office for Africa
Dr Jean Bosco Ndihokubwayo

Regional Office for the Americas
Dr María Dolores Pérez-Rosales

Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean
Dr Humayun Asghar

Regional Office for Europe
Dr Valentina Hafner

Regional Office for South-East Asia
Dr Aparna Singh Shah

Regional Office for the Western Pacific
Dr Klara Tisocki


Christopher Bailey

Regional Office for Africa
Collins Boakye-Agyemang

Regional Office for the Americas
Leticia Linn

Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean
Mona Yassin

Regional Office for Europe
Faith Vorting

Regional Office for South-East Asia
Vismita Gupta-Smith

Regional Office for the Western Pacific
Christian Lindemeier


  1. I had visited your website which was really good Blood Bank Products

  2. I had visited your website which was really good Blood Bank Productsr