World blood donor day: PGIMER urges people to donate platelets | punjab | chandigarh | Hindustan Times
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World blood donor day: PGIMER urges people to donate platelets

At the PGIMER, daily over 100 patients need platelets. As platelets must be transfused within five days of donation, it becomes more crucial for blood banks to keep a fresh supply.

punjab Updated: Jun 14, 2018 12:22 IST
Tanbir Dhaliwal
Tanbir Dhaliwal
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
World blood donor day,PGIMER,blood transfusion
A person can donate blood four times in a year, whereas he or she can donate platelets 24 times a year.(HT File)

On the World Blood Donor Day, the blood transfusion department of the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER) urges you to become a platelet donor.

Platelets are blood cells that form clots and stop bleeding. These tiny cells of blood are most crucial to save the lives of those fighting cancer, chronic diseases and traumatic injuries.

At the PGIMER, daily over 100 patients need platelets. As platelets must be transfused within five days of donation, it becomes more crucial for blood banks to keep a fresh supply.

Dr RR Sharma, professor, blood transfusion department, PGIMER, said, “Our daily requirement is 100-150 units. The major supply of platelets is from the whole blood because they are easily available and cheaper. Most of our patients are afflicted with cancer and they are given platelets free of cost.”

Need to increase platelet donor registry

Answering why platelet donors are the need of the hour, the doctor said, “With an increase in transplant programmes, the demand for blood components has gone up and platelet is one of the important components, as it prevents bleeding.”

Dr Suchet Sachdev from the department added, “A dedicated team of platelet donors is required because when there is an epidemic, not only more number of recipients need it, but the donors’ pool shrinks as they are also the one effected by the disease.”

He said the only way out is to increase the platelet donor registry. “Currently 500 people are registered as platelet donors but at times we need to make 25 calls and then one donor turns up,” Dr Sachdev said.

How to be a donor

PGIMER holds voluntary blood donation camps daily across the tricity and around 200 units of blood is collected. Interested persons can contact on 0172-2756486/490.

A person can donate blood four times in a year, whereas he or she can donate platelets 24 times a year. He can donate platelets after 72 hours, twice a month and 24 times a year.

To selectively harvest platelets, a donor’s blood is taken via a machine which takes around 1-2 hours to complete the process. “The advantage is that one unit of platelet collected by this method is equal to five to six units of platelets derived from whole blood, said Dr RR Sharma.