BLOOD DONORS AND BLOOD COLLECTION: Status of blood banking and the blood supply in Afghanistan

Authors

  • M. Tayyeb Ayyoubi,

    1. From the Institute for Engineering in Medicine; the Department of Laboratory Medicine & Pathology, Medical School; and the Department of Health Policy and Management School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota; the Afghanistan National Blood Safety and Transfusion Service, Kabul, Afghanistan; the American Red Cross, Washington, DC; and the Department of Pathology, University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, Kentucky.
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  • Terri Konstenius,

    1. From the Institute for Engineering in Medicine; the Department of Laboratory Medicine & Pathology, Medical School; and the Department of Health Policy and Management School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota; the Afghanistan National Blood Safety and Transfusion Service, Kabul, Afghanistan; the American Red Cross, Washington, DC; and the Department of Pathology, University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, Kentucky.
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  • Jeffrey C. McCullough,

    1. From the Institute for Engineering in Medicine; the Department of Laboratory Medicine & Pathology, Medical School; and the Department of Health Policy and Management School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota; the Afghanistan National Blood Safety and Transfusion Service, Kabul, Afghanistan; the American Red Cross, Washington, DC; and the Department of Pathology, University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, Kentucky.
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  • Ted Eastlund,

    1. From the Institute for Engineering in Medicine; the Department of Laboratory Medicine & Pathology, Medical School; and the Department of Health Policy and Management School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota; the Afghanistan National Blood Safety and Transfusion Service, Kabul, Afghanistan; the American Red Cross, Washington, DC; and the Department of Pathology, University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, Kentucky.
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  • Mary Clay,

    1. From the Institute for Engineering in Medicine; the Department of Laboratory Medicine & Pathology, Medical School; and the Department of Health Policy and Management School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota; the Afghanistan National Blood Safety and Transfusion Service, Kabul, Afghanistan; the American Red Cross, Washington, DC; and the Department of Pathology, University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, Kentucky.
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  • Robert Bowman,

    1. From the Institute for Engineering in Medicine; the Department of Laboratory Medicine & Pathology, Medical School; and the Department of Health Policy and Management School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota; the Afghanistan National Blood Safety and Transfusion Service, Kabul, Afghanistan; the American Red Cross, Washington, DC; and the Department of Pathology, University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, Kentucky.
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  • Ahmad Masoud Rahmani,

    1. From the Institute for Engineering in Medicine; the Department of Laboratory Medicine & Pathology, Medical School; and the Department of Health Policy and Management School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota; the Afghanistan National Blood Safety and Transfusion Service, Kabul, Afghanistan; the American Red Cross, Washington, DC; and the Department of Pathology, University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, Kentucky.
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  • William Riley,

    1. From the Institute for Engineering in Medicine; the Department of Laboratory Medicine & Pathology, Medical School; and the Department of Health Policy and Management School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota; the Afghanistan National Blood Safety and Transfusion Service, Kabul, Afghanistan; the American Red Cross, Washington, DC; and the Department of Pathology, University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, Kentucky.
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  • Jeffrey McCullough

    1. From the Institute for Engineering in Medicine; the Department of Laboratory Medicine & Pathology, Medical School; and the Department of Health Policy and Management School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota; the Afghanistan National Blood Safety and Transfusion Service, Kabul, Afghanistan; the American Red Cross, Washington, DC; and the Department of Pathology, University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, Kentucky.
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  • Supported in part by Grant 5 T32 HL07934 from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; the American Red Cross; and the University of Minnesota Institute for Engineering in Medicine.

Jeffrey McCullough, University of Minnesota, MMC 609, 420 Delaware Street SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455; e-mail: mccul001@umn.edu.

Abstract

BACKGROUND: As a result of more than 20 years of war in Afghanistan, its blood supply system has been damaged. We carried out an assessment of that blood supply system to determine the type and extent of assistance needed to increase blood availability and safety.

STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: An assessment tool was developed, daily activities in Afghanistan were observed, and key personnel were interviewed.

RESULTS: Because there was no donor recruitment organization, most blood was obtained by the family replacement system. There was an inadequate supply of stored blood, which led to use of blood before screening test results for transfusion-transmitted disease were complete. Whole blood was provided but blood components were not produced. Blood was tested intermittently for human immunodeficiency virus Types 1 and 2, hepatitis B surface antigen, hepatitis C virus, and syphilis using agglutination-based screening methods.

CONCLUSIONS: A dedicated staff is in place but to strengthen the blood supply system in Afghanistan, it will be important to address infrastructure and facilities, organization, standard operating methods, supplies and equipment, training, quality assurance, and transfusion medicine education.

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