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Morocco : A Ramadan schedule makes blood donation a complicated mission

On Thursday, a group of blood-donors who wanted to help a person in need, were faced with a series of obstacles before being able to give blood. According to one of these donors, the Ramadan schedule had made blood donations a complicated task.

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A group of blood-donors who wanted to help a person in need couldn’t give blood at Rabat’s blood transfusion center during daytime on the 3rd day of Ramadan. They were told to wait until Iftar to donate blood. The group of blood-donors had to check on several caravans that were supposed to serve as blood-donation sites, before realizing that the only one that operated on Thursday night was located in Temara, a neighboring city.

Speaking to Yabiladi on Friday, a woman from the same group complained about the fact that it was time-consuming and confusing to donate her blood during Ramadan. She recalled that after «visiting Rabat’s blood transfusion center in Madinat Al Irfane to donate blood [she] was told that she cannot do that as she was fasting».

Confusing and time-consuming

«They refused to let us give blood because of Ramadan and when we said that it was for an urgent matter and that we wanted to break the fast to do that, they said that it was impossible anyways», the woman, who requested anonymity to protect the person in need of a blood transfusion, argued.

However, the problem was not completely resolved, as this group was told to go to caravans set during this holy month to receive people who want to give blood. «Staffers at the blood transfusion center gave us a list that included the addresses of blood donation caravans in several areas in Rabat, Salé and Temara», she explained.

The list shared on social media by internet users indicated that on Thursday, May the 9th, the caravan in question must have been operating in Salé in a neighborhood called Sidi Moussa. «When we went there as the list suggested, we realized that there was nothing», the same woman complained.

In downtown Rabat, the group of blood-donors noticed that the caravan in Bab El Had was closed and that they had to look for other facilities, where they could give blood. «Finally, we managed to go to Temara, where a blood donation caravan received blood-donors from 9pm to 11pm», she disappointedly recalled.

A Ramadan schedule

Speaking Friday to Yabiladi, the director of National Blood Transfusion Service Mohamed Benajiba told Yabiladi that during Ramadan, blood donation centers around the Kindgom adopt a different program and schedule.

«Blood-donors should give blood during the night», he explained, adding that «blood transfusion centers open their doors during the day in Ramadan to work on the blood they collected the night before because it is problematic for donors to give blood while fasting».

Giving more details about how blood transfusion centers work during Ramadan, Benajiba indicated that «currently, there is a national campaign that targets around 96 mosques around the country». In addition to that, «4 caravans are operating in big cities after the Iftar : 2 caravans in Rabat, one in Casablanca, and another one in Fes».

Commenting on the situation aforementioned by the group of blood-donors in Rabat, Benajiba clarified that the caravan in Bab Al Had «won’t be operating during Ramadan because few people go there to give their blood». «We realized that the blood donation caravan in Temara is more active than the one in Rabat and we mobilized our teams there», he stressed.

Benajiba indicated that during this holy month, the National Blood Transfusion Service decided to target people who go to mosques, after concluding that blood-donors are too busy to visit their centers during this time of the year. 

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