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Kenya to manage blood banks electronically

IANS | Last Updated: Thursday, July 31, 2014 - 10:28
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Nairobi: Kenyans will soon be able to ascertain about their blood donation suitability via an electronically generated short message, as a blood agency is preparing itself for a digital mechanism to monitor its blood banks.

As the country fails to meet its annual demand of 400,000 units of blood, it aims to increase the number of donors so that they are able to supply enough blood at all times.

The Kenya National Blood Transfusion Services (KNBTS) will be operating fron November onwards on a digital system run on an eProgesa software, which will provide a platform for storing the donors' details and their blood safety status, Xinhua reported.

"With the software, we will be able to know donors who can make any further blood donations and if they are unsafe," KNBTS deputy director Catherine Ngugi said Wednesday.

"The software will automatically generate an electronic message that will inform the donor on her or his blood donation status and provide further advice for the need to seek medical care," Ngugi said on the conclusion of a two-week staff training on the software's usage.

Ngugi also said the digital platform will provide them with relevant information necessary for identifying people with rare blood groups and who can be contacted during the emergency needs for their particular type of blood.

Safe donors will also receive reminders generated by the software to make further blood donations during their due time span.

This, the official said, will ensure that they have a consistent supply of usable blood while they pursue other healthy Kenyans for more blood donation.

"Each year, we need 400,000 units of blood but we have not been able to meet that demand and our plan is to increase the number of donors so that we are able to supply enough blood at all times," she said.

With the digital system, the agency will be able to monitor and manage the available blood units in all its facilities across the country while ensuring distribution of the required blood types in respective hospitals.

The software, a product of the France-based Mak-System International Group, will be available without Internet connectivity, making it a relevant resource in the remote areas especially during mobile blood donation drives.


First Published: Thursday, July 31, 2014 - 10:28
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