KUALA LUMPUR – Only 2.2 per cent of the Malaysian population donate blood, compared with 3.5 to 5 per cent recorded in developed countries, said Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam.
He said there were still Malaysians who were afraid to donate blood for fear that it would affect their health.
He said 675,315 bags of blood were collected nationwide last year, which was then processed and used for treatment of 337,807 patients.
“This means, on an average, we have to prepare almost 2,000 bags of blood for use for 925 patients every day,” he told reporters after opening the national-level World Blood Donors Day here.
Subramaniam said programmes had to be carried out continuously to instill public awareness on the importance of donating blood.
“Sometimes, people are worried about the side effects after donating blood. They don’t have to because health screening will be conducted on potential blood donors to determine whether they are fit to donate blood or not,” he added.
With the approaching Ramadan, Subramaniam advised Muslims who wanted to donate blood during the fasting month to ensure they took heavy meal for ‘sahur’ (morning meal). – BERNAMA