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Voluntary Blood Donations Up in Beijing

Beijing Red Cross Blood Center said on December 13 that 100 percent of blood provided by it since October for clinical use was from voluntary unpaid donors, and its daily blood stocks amount to about 7,000 units – enough for Beijing's clinical needs.

The capital's colleges began to stop compulsory blood taking from students this September, and mobile Red Cross collection units regularly appear on campuses instead.

More than 37,000 units of blood were collected from unpaid donations in Beijing from the beginning of this year to December 11, 67 percent of which was from college students.
Winter is usually a low season for blood donations: at the end of last year, Beijing Red Cross Blood Center experienced shortages of Type AB and Type B blood. But this month it reduced the frequency at which it dispatched mobile collection units because of healthy stocks.

Beijing Red Cross Blood Center said stock levels will be published on its website www.brcbc.org in the future.

The city will still use quotas for blood donations next year, though it cancelled this year's over two months ago.

New Ministry of Health rules issued on November 17, to be implemented in March, mean all blood donors will have to produce ID when giving blood. This means they can be stopped from donating too often and informed of any blood-borne pathogens found upon screening the blood.

It will also allow close relatives to use the blood at less cost if they need it.

Beijing Red Cross Blood Center said it wants to establish a stable group of regular blood donors.

"Not only the enthusiastic college students are needed to be regular blood donors, but also others aged 18-55 who work and live in Beijing,"said Gao Guojing, the center’s director.
(China.org.cn by Li Xiaohua, December 18, 2005)

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