Karamoja gets first blood bank centre

Moroto.

The Uganda Blood Transfusion Services has set up the first blood bank in the Karamoja area. The blood bank and distribution centre at Moroto Regional Referral Hospital will open in June and will serve all health centres in the seven districts of Karamoja.

The blood bank was set up with support from the Uganda Red Cross Society. Ms Sarah Musisi, the director of Emergencies at Uganda Red Cross Society, said at a regional blood awareness meeting in Moroto on Thursday that the purpose of the centre was to solve the chronic shortage of blood in health centres in Karamoja.

She said the Uganda Red Cross Society will mobilise donors to carryout counselling while the Uganda Blood Transfusion Services collects blood.Dr Benjamin Wabwire, the principal medical officer at Mbale regional blood bank, said the new blood bank and distribution centre will make blood available for patients in Karamoja.

“It has been very difficult for Karamoja hospitals that had been depending on distant blood banks like Mbale and Gulu districts, leading to patients’ death due to delayed blood deliveries,” Dr Wabwire said.

He added the situation would be made worse during rainy seasons when the roads in Karamoja become impassable to motorists, making it difficult to bring blood in time.

“We have lost so many lives due to waiting for blood to be brought from other districts but now with the blood bank in Moroto, it’s a relief to patients,” Mark Aol Musoka,moroto district chairperson

SOURCE: DAILY MONITOR

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