Blood donation club saves thousands of patients’ lives
The nationwide social distancing policy implemented in Vietnam for most of April, while necessary to contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, left major impacts on businesses across the country.
For us, it meant we had to go a couple of weeks without our beloved bubble tea and coffee, but for patients desperately in need of blood transfusions, it was a matter of life and death, as blood donation programs were halted and hospitals were met with severe blood shortages.
Luckily, thanks to the efforts of Mr. Trần Phước Hùng, a farmer living in the central city of Đà Nẵng, and his blood donation club, many lives were saved.
The blood donation club started in 2015
Talking to tienphong.vn, Mr. Hùng, 39, shared that the first time he donated blood, he got very emotional upon seeing his blood transferred to a patient in need. As a result, in 2015, he gathered blood donors in the area to establish a blood donation club named “Máu nóng – Hiểu và thương” (Hot blood – Understanding and love).
After 5 years of operation, the club has now garnered 1,400 members in Đà Nẵng and the nearby province of Quảng Nam.
A club member donating blood
Image credit: CLB Máu nóng Hiểu và Thương Đà Nẵng
Initially, Mr. Hùng used handwritten notes to keep track of members’ info such as their contact details, blood type, and blood donation history. As the number of members grew, though, that method became too inconvenient, so he asked a club member who is a programmer to write a software programme to help him keep track of things digitally.
“The software has helped us respond more quickly when there is a demand, as everything is shown in the database. Thanks to it, our operation has become a lot smoother,” Mr. Hùng shared.
Mr. Hùng working on the software programme to contact available members for blood donation
Image credit: tienphong.vn
Last April, when Vietnam entered social distancing nationwide to contain COVID-19, hospitals in Đà Nẵng faced a serious shortage of blood as blood donation campaigns could not be carried out. The club’s operation also took a hit as many members had left the big city to return to their hometowns.
That didn’t stop Mr. Hùng and his comrades in their effort to save lives. Notices of patients in urgent need were posted on the group’s Facebook page almost on a daily basis, with many comments asking if the demand had been met.
A notice posted on the club’s Facebook page on 16th April, with members commenting to leave their phone numbers
Image credit: Trần Phước Hùng
Dr. Phạm Thị Ngọc Ánh, head of Đà Nẵng Hospital’s Haematology and Blood Transfusion Department, said that Máu nóng – Hiểu và thương was one of the most active blood donation clubs. Their contribution was invaluable during the COVID-19 pandemic, and it was thanks to their enthusiasm that doctors felt more confident treating patients.
Club members organizing a blood donation event on 16th February
Image credit: Trần Phước Hùng
You can contribute too
If you are in Vietnam and want to donate blood yourself, here are a few destinations in the big cities where you can do so:
- Number 26 Lương Ngọc Quyến Str., Hoàn Kiếm District
- Number 10, Alley 122 Láng Str., Đống Đa District
In Đà Nẵng
- 522 Ông Ích Khiêm Str., Hải Châu District
In Hồ Chí Minh City
- 106 Thiên Phước Str., Tân Bình District
One simple good deed can save a life
Stories like Mr. Hùng’s prove that it is never a bad time to carry out a good deed. Props to him for offering a helping hand to those in need in the toughest of times.
For more stories, check out:
- Vietnamese artist portrays Hanoi as a steampunk fantasy
- Vietnamese grow plants in their houses to combat the heat
- Hanoi university students design fancy masks
Cover image adapted from Trần Phước Hùng