Blood Drive in Full Swing in Zagreb

Total Croatia News

An attempt to increase blood donors in the Croatian capital.

The Institute for Transfusion Medicine was extraordinarily crowded yesterday. After the Institute published an appeal to blood donors, in particular for blood types 0+, 0–, A– and B–, many citizens went to the 3 Petrova Street in Zagreb. Among them was Jelena Miškulin, who donated blood for the first time. “For a long time I have been planning to donate blood, since my husband has been a regular donor for the last 15 years. Now when I have read in the papers that the inventories were almost empty, I made the final decision”, said Miškulin and noted that she will certainly do it again, since the process was even easier than she expected, reports Vecernji List on October 1, 2015.

Among the donors was Darko Skeledžija. The 62-year-old has donated blood 105 times, and plans to reach at least 150 donations. “I cannot even remember how I started, but I feel that I am doing the right thing”, said Skeledžija who introduced his son to blood donations when he was only 18 years old. Now he is 40 years old and has already given blood 63 times.

Since the beginning of the week, every day around 500 people come to donate blood, which is higher than average. “Appeals always encourage old donors, but also attract the new ones”, said Irena Jukić, director of the Institute for Transfusion Medicine, adding that on average day around 350 people donate their blood. “We are very thankful to them all, because blood donation is truly an act of unconditional kindness. Donors save lives of people they do not even know and get nothing in return”, explained the director, adding that the reason for shortage was extremely high demand in the last ten days.

“On an average weekend, we use about 400 units, but last weekend we needed almost 800 units”, said Jukić, adding that the recent years have seen an increase in demand. During this summer, 3000 more units of blood were used than last summer. Therefore, the Institute calls on the public to come to 3 Petrova Street every workday from 7.30 am to 7 pm, and from 7.30 am to 3 pm on Saturdays.

Blood donation is a completely harmless procedure, and anyone who comes to the Institute must first go through a blood pressure check and fill in a questionnaire. Blood cannot be donated by those who weight under 55 kilograms, and those who had a surgery or a tattoo done in the last six months. According to the Institute, on average about 15 percent of donors are rejected. The procedure takes about ten minutes, and every donor get a free meal. Men can give blood every three months, and women every four months. Men with more than 35 donations and women with more than 25 donations are exempt from paying supplementary health insurance, while the citizens of Zagreb are also entitled to a free public transport pass.


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