Centralization of Tehran blood centers with the assistance of IBTO Charity Foundation
Iranian Blood Transfusion Organization (IBTO) was established in 1974 as a governmental, centralized national blood service. Since then, IBTO has achieved many improvements in voluntary blood donor recruitment, blood safety, plasma-derived medicines, education and research which have made it as one of the pioneer organizations in the region. However, there are still some challenges which need to be overcome.
One of the main challenges of blood services in developing countries is financial constraints and relying on governmental funding. Coincided with the celebration of World Blood Donor Day in 2015, IBTO Charity Foundation was established to assist IBTO in advancing its goals.
IBTO Charity Foundation consists of members from private and public institutions such as municipality and private banks as well as individuals with multi-disciplinary backgrounds in blood transfusion, media, sport, business and health.
Additionally, blood centers in developing countries suffer from low number of blood collection in each center which results in increasing the operational costs and inefficient use of funding to provide the sufficient human resources. The median annual donations per blood center is 3100 in the low- and middle-income countries, as compared to 15 000 in the high-income countries. The existence of multiple facilities which do not best meet the standards required for paying tribute to the blood donors causes the reduction of donors satisfaction.
To address these challenges, IBTO has decided to centralize its blood centers to a more efficient and coordinated service.
The centralization project was initiated in Tehran in 2016 where the number of blood collection centers is going to be reduced from 17 to 5. Although 27% of total blood transfusions are administrated in the capital city, only 17% of total blood units are collected in Tehran.
The project is going to be implemented by the contribution of IBTO Charity Foundation which was established in 2015. IBTO Donors charity foundation consists of members from private and public institutions such as municipality and private banks as well as individuals with multi-disciplinary backgrounds in blood transfusion, media, sport, business and health.
With the effort of IBTO Charity Foundation, Municipality of Tehran has agreed to donate five lands to IBTO located in different parts of Tehran with the value of 37,000,000 US$. Also, The Bank of Industry and Mine accepted to bear the financial costs of constructing those blood centers.
The centers will meet the high standards based on the guidelines of Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP). The centers will be equipped with cutting-edge facilities and will have enough spaces for parking, waiting and refreshing rooms which will make blood donation more convenient for blood donors.
"Blood donation is the inevitable part of cultural and social issues. I hope, with the establishment of IBTO Charity Foundation, we witness the increase of social participation in other parts of blood donation." Said Dr. Ali Akbar Pourfathollah, IBTO Managing Director.
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