Investments in blood safety improve the availability of blood to underserved areas in a sub-saharan african country

J.P. Pitman, R.L. Wilkinson, S.V. Basavaraju, B.G. Von Finckenstein, C.T.H. Smit Sibinga, A. Marfin, M.J. Postma, M.N. Mataranyika, J.L. Tobias

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting AbstractAcademic


Background: Since 2004, several African countries, including Namibia, have received assistance from the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). Aims: Gains have been documented in the safety and number of collected units in these countries, but the distribution of blood has not been described. Methods: Nine years of data on blood requests and issues from Namibia were stratified by region to describe temporal and spatial changes in the number and type of blood components issued to Namibian healthcare facilities nationally. Results: Between 2004-2007 (early years of PEPFAR support) and 2008-2011 (peak years of PEPFAR support), the average number of red cell units issued annually increased by 23.5% in seven densely populated but less developed regions in northern Namibia; by 30% in two regions with urban centers; and by 35.1% in four sparsely-populated rural regions. Summary/Conclusions: Investments in blood safety and a policy decision to emphasize distribution of blood to underserved regions improved blood availability in remote rural areas and increased the proportion of units distributed as components. However, disparities persist in the distribution of blood between Namibia's urban and rural regions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)70-71
Number of pages2
JournalVox Sanguinis
Issue numberSupplement S1 (57-248)
Publication statusPublished - 1-Jun-2014


  • blood safety
  • blood
  • society
  • blood transfusion
  • hematology
  • organization
  • investment
  • Namibia
  • erythrocyte
  • health care facility
  • emergency
  • United States
  • rural area
  • policy
  • safety
  • blood component
  • acquired immune deficiency syndrome

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