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Gordon hits local hospitals subjecting blood donors to rigorous testing

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Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Chairman Richard Gordon has denounced the practice of some local hospitals of subjecting blood donors to rigorous blood testing processes.

Gordon, at a press conference, said hospitals and blood service facilities should instead lessen the sufferings of the poor Filipinos by eliminating the redundancy in blood testing processes.

Gordon expressed his dismay over the practice of some hospitals that retest blood units patients have obtained from PRC, noting this is unnecessary because blood from the ISO-certified organization is safe and of high quality.

He explained challenges face the people when they cannot access blood because of the problem of greed.

Gordon said some private hospitals charge up to P6,000 as compared to the prescribed P1,800-blood processing fee which is being upheld by PRC and government institutions.

The system violates Republic Act No. 7719 which states all blood banks and blood centers shall operate as a “non-profit” facility wherein blood donation should be voluntary and service fees may be collected but should not be higher than the amount set by the Department of Health (DoH).

The PRC has been providing safe and quality blood long before it was recognized as a Red Cross Society and it is providing 50 percent of the blood needs of the country.

The PRC said it is making sure not to give contaminated blood to recipients.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III heeded Gordon’s call and said the department reiterates that blood units delivered by PRC are of high-quality and do not require further blood testing.

The mass donation program of PRC will continue to better cater to the needs of the community after reaching the country’s target of getting one million units of blood from the total population, according to DoH.

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