This year’s World Blood Donor Day on June 14 will focus on blood donation and universal access to safe blood transfusion, as a component of achieving universal health coverage.

With the slogan “Safe blood for all”, the campaign looks to raise awareness of the universal need for safe blood in the delivery of healthcare and the crucial roles that voluntary donations play in achieving the goal of universal health coverage.

In fact, the event serves to thank voluntary, unpaid blood donors for their life-saving gifts of blood and also to raise awareness of the need for regular blood donations to ensure that all individuals and communities have access to affordable and timely supplies of safe and quality-assured blood and blood products.

Transfusion of blood and blood products save millions of lives every year. Blood and blood products are essential components in the proper management of women suffering from bleeding associated with pregnancy and childbirth; children suffering from severe anaemia due to malaria and malnutrition; patients with blood and bone marrow disorders, inherited disorders of haemoglobin and immune deficiency conditions; victims of trauma, emergencies, disasters and accidents; as well as patients undergoing advanced medical and surgical procedures.