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Health News of Thursday, 10 January 2019

Source: Ernest Senanu Dovlo

Navrongo: Diocesan priests embark on blood donation exercise

An individual donating blood during the exercise

As part of activities marking the 27th National and 15th Biennial Congress of the National Union of Ghana Diocesan Priests' Associations, Congress Fathers on Wednesday, January 9 embarked on a blood donation exercise to help stock the blood banks within the Navrongo-Bolgatanga area.

Speaking at the opening of the 2019 NUGDPA congress on Monday, General Manager for Telekay and an ambassador for blood donation drive, Maame Kwaaba Stephens made an appeal to the congress Fathers to use their parishes as tools for blood donation drive exercises as well as have a more coordinated effort with the project as a way of renewing their commitment to society.

"As we give blood, we give someone the gift of life. Our impact will go beyond the patient - touching their family, loved ones and society," she said.

For his part, President of NUGDPA, Very. Rev. Fr. Francis Appiah Kubi encouraged congress Fathers to lay away all fear associated with blood donation. The President of the Ghana Catholic Bishops Conference, Most Rev. Philip Naameh re-emphasized the need for voluntary blood donations as a way of giving back to God what he has blessed man with.

Speaking to Ghanaweb after the exercise, one of the congress Fathers, Rev. Fr. Stephen Kofi Sakpaku of the Apostolic Vicariate of Donkorkrom said he was excited to have been part of the exercise, making it the 15th time he has donated.

"This is my 15th blood donation. I started donating since SHS 2. Donating blood is very important and it is something we should all do. Life is precious and it's expensive to lose life. Hence, we ought to donate to save life especially that of women in labour," he said.

Catholic Diocesan Priests are currently in Navrongo for their 2019 congress.



The Congress which began on Monday, January 7 with the arrival of Congress Fathers, is expected to bring together all Diocesan Priests in Ghana to take stock of their lives and to reflect on the theme, "Challenges in Catholic Marriage: The role of the priest."

The Congress will also present an opportunity to all Diocesan Priests within Ghana to meet and reflect deeply on their priestly identity and mission.

Particularly, in the context of the theme of the Congress, to share fraternal love and to learn from brother priests as they socialize.

Despite the various interventions over the years, Ghana has still not been able to achieve the 100 per cent voluntary blood donation status as required by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Statistics from the WHO indicates that only 62 countries globally get close to a 100 per cent of their national blood supplies from voluntary unpaid blood donations, with thirty four others still dependent on family replacement blood donors.

The country collected a total of 162,226 units of blood in 2017, of which only 36 per cent were given by voluntary unpaid blood donors, with the remaining 64 per cent coming from family replacement donors.