As the world faces a global health crisis caused by COVID-19, blood donation is essential due to the rising need for human blood that will help save lives.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development in the region extends willingness to accommodate and support the services of the National Voluntary Blood Services Program by advocating to the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) beneficiaries for voluntary, non-remunerated blood donation.

DSWD-7 Regional Director Rebecca P. Geamala, Assistant Regional Director for Operations Shalaine Marie S. Lucero and Pantawid Regional Program Coordinator Raquel Enriquez sign the pledge of commitment to show support to the bloodletting campaign of the Department of Health (DOH)7 with the theme “Mission towards recovery” Regain hope, save lives, bring smiles.

This is in line with the National Blood Services Act of 1994 or Republic Act 7719, that promotes and encourages voluntary blood donation by the citizenry, instills public consciousness of the principle that blood donation is a humanitarian act, and mobilizes all sectors of the community to participate in the mechanisms for voluntary and non-profit collection of blood.

With almost 280 thousand Pantawid Pamilya partner beneficiaries in Central Visayas, they are a very potential source through voluntary blood donation.

The Sub-National Blood Center for the Visayas of the Department of Health – Central Visayas Center for Health Development starts conducting a Blood Donor Recruitment Orientation in the barangay health center to the beneficiaries in coordination with the City/ Municipal Links of the respective LGUs, a month prior to the schedule of the mobile blood donation activity.

The Links will provide the list of Pantawid beneficiaries who voluntarily commits and agrees to donate blood. They will also assist the beneficiaries during the actual bloodletting.

Bloodletting activities are conducted at the Rural Health Units of each LGUs, while in some large cities such as Cebu City, Lapulapu City, and Mandaue City, these are done in the barangay health stations adjacent to gyms or covered courts to avoid overcrowding and observe the health protocols, particularly, social distancing.

To be able to donate blood, the donors must be at least 50 kilograms, must have an average pulse rate of 60-100, blood pressure limit is 90 over 60 and over-limit is 160 over 100, have at least 6 hours of sleep, must not smoke within 3-4 hours prior to extraction, and did not take in alcohol in at least 24-72 hours.

On November 9, DSWD 7 Regional Director Rebecca P. Geamala and Assistant Regional Director for Operations (ARDO) Shalaine Marie S. Lucero together with DOH CVCHD Regional Director Dr. Jaime Bernadas and Subnational Blood Center for Visayas Head of Laboratory Dr. Sophia Mancao inked the memorandum of agreement that encourages the Pantawid beneficiaries to help save lives through voluntary donation of blood.

The activity was witnessed by officials from the Department of the Interior and Local Government, Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas, and other participating agencies, who also signed the pledge of commitment as a support to the bloodletting campaign. ###

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