Blood bank, with a contribution from steel plant, to be set up

A symposium on a unified approach to donation of eye, blood, organs and body underlined the need for creating more awareness in view of the potential to save lives.

The symposium was organised on Sunday by Mohsin Eye Bank to mark its decennial celebration.

Chairman of the bank Kasim S. Mehdi stressed the need for bringing about a unified approach to the four donations. Secretary of Indian Red Cross Blood Bank P. Venugopal and Medical Director of A.S. Raja Blood Bank A. Sugandhi focussed on the need for more voluntary blood donation against the generally prevailing practice of replacement donation.

Mr. Venugopal said a modern blood bank would soon be set up with Rs.2.5 crore of contribution from the Visakhapatnam Steel Plant. Dr. Sugandhi said in spite of having the largest population of youth the blood donation percentage was between 0.9 and 1 per cent against 7 per cent in the US. With need never being uniform and storage problems, there was a necessity to run centralised factory with peripheral supply system.

C. N. S. P Krishna Rao, who presided, said in some countries donation of organs was by default. Those not willing to donate should specify, he said. Gastroenterologist A. Siva Prasad spoke of the moral, ethical and legal issues involved live liver donor transplantation in view of the likely donor mortality which generally remained undisclosed.

Visakha Eye Hospital Medical Director C.V. Gopal Raju said myths about eye donation should be cleared and suggested various campaigns to involve a large number of people, including students.