13 December 2017

An open letter to hospitals that make patients relatives run around to get blood

A relative of mine was being treated at a hospital, and I heard the hospital was making his friends and relatives run around, to arrange for replacement blood donors. Since he was undergoing plasmapheresis and dialysis, there was a huge demand for blood. Moreover, even though they brought blood donors and paid the donors, they still had to pay extra for blood units that the hospital gave. That was a shame. Especially for a hospital that claimed to treat its patients well.

I wrote a letter to them. The links in the letter are important. They will take you to a whole new level of knowledge.


I know there's no point in taking you on a guilt-trip of making relatives of patients running around trying to find blood donors, so let's get down to some facts:

I understand hospitals have their own logistics to worry about, but when you have a marketing term that claims to treat people well, the hospital's word-of-mouth advertising will definitely improve when people know that this is one hospital that does not inconvenience people. Apart from the blood donation aspect, I really appreciate other procedures that are followed well in the hospital.

Kindly forward this to the person who can take decisions on organizing blood donation drives. Meanwhile, I hope your hospital could immediately stop inconveniencing people and instead organize for processed blood units to be brought to the hospital from other blood banks (which follow strict guidelines). You could of course charge a premium on it.


For the reader: If you can organize for donors, then please do. There is indeed a shortage of blood. But be aware that you are not obligated to.
Bangalore itself needs an average of 800 units of blood everyday!!! Do encourage and participate in blood donation drives. It's the best way to ensure there is safe blood available for everyone in need. Encourage hospitals to organize frequent blood donation camps instead of just complacently indulging them with replacement donors.


Some points from the links above:
  • With no official complaints raised by the public, corporate blood banks have no incentive to walk away from replacement blood. “Grievances can be filed at the PM’s portal,” Centralised Public Grievance Redress and Monitoring System (CPGRAMS), “which collates grievances from multiple sources and forwards them to the state government, nodal officer, or blood bank concerned,” says Dr Shobini.
  • Shobini Rajan, assistant director general, National Aids Control Organisation (NACO), said the blood policy doesn't say it is illegal for hospitals to ask for donors but it is undesirable.

More on blood donation: http://nrecursions.blogspot.in/2015/02/blood-donation-what-went-right.html
And volunteering: http://nrecursions.blogspot.in/2015/07/how-to-start-volunteering-or-how-to.html

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