Assistant Drug Controller (Mangalore Circle) Nagaraja K.V. has urged the blood banks in the district to collect only the prescribed price of Rs. 700 fixed by the Karnataka State Blood Transfusion Council (KSBTC), for a unit of blood (350 ml).

He was chairing a meeting of the officers and representatives of the blood banks in the district, following complaints that some blood banks were collecting more that the prescribed fee. Deputy Commissioner A.B. Ibrahim had directed that such a meeting should be held.

Mr. Nagaraj also asked blood banks not to force the kin of the patients (or those who visit the blood banks to collect blood) to donate blood. “The blood donation must be purely voluntary,” he said and appealed the officials to convince or persuade the donors to donate blood voluntarily.

He directed the blood banks to display the available stock of blood units.

He added that only Indian Red Cross Society (IRCS) Blood Bank and Government Wenlock Hospital had been authorised to organise blood donation camps and any hospital or blood bank could organise such camps only in association with them.

IRCS Chairman Prabhakar Shriyan said that the IRCS would share the cost and provide human resource if the camps were organised with them. The meeting also decided to organise a Volunatary Blood Donation Week in the month of June and stressed the need to give wide publicity for the same. A suggestion for a common blood donor card was accepted at the meeting, the release said.

A blood bank representative urged the Drugs Control Department to take steps to display blood unit stocks available in all the blood banks in the State so that anybody could check the data online.