Jan 18, Colombo: Each year, the World Health Organization (WHO) identifies a host country to commemorate the World Blood Donor Day to raise awareness of the need for safe blood and blood products and to thank voluntary unpaid blood donors for their gifts of blood.
This year the WHO has chosen Sri Lanka as the venue to commemorate the global event in recognition of the commitment and interest of local blood donors on the blood transfusion service.
In selecting Sri Lanka as the venue for this years' event on June 14, the WHO has considered Sri Lanka's success of the blood donating service and provision of safe blood for patients.
Sri Lanka's National Blood Transfusion Service has been recognized by the WHO as the best model of the transfusion services in South Asia.
The National Blood Transfusion Service (NBTS) is the sole supplier of blood to all government hospitals and the majority of private sector hospitals in the country.
It has also been noted that the WHO has also taken this decision as a token of appreciation on the cultural trend of the Sri Lankan people to donate blood as a meritorious act.
The event aims to promote voluntary unpaid blood donations and the WHO targets for all countries to obtain 100 percent of blood supplies from voluntary unpaid donors by 2020.
The WHO since 2004 marks the World Blood Donor Day every year throughout the world on June 14t. Last year, France hosted the 10th anniversary of the event. In previous years countries including South Africa, Britain, Thailand, Canada, Dubai and Australia have hosted the Blood Donor Day events.