Donating blood strictly a voluntary act — Dr Rauf

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DONATION DRIVE: Taib (third left) does his bit for the flag day sale while (from left) Chou, Dr Rauf and Abang Abdul Karim look on. — Penerangan photo

KUCHING: Associations that collect blood and demand payment for their deed have received the backlash from Malaysian Red Crescent (MRC) here.

MRC Kuching chapter chairman Datuk Dr Abang Abdul Rauf Abang Zen said that such conduct was not proper because donating blood was strictly a voluntary act. Also, government policy supported non-remunerated donations.

“I do not agree that blood donors should form their own associations. You cannot get people to donate blood and expect to be financially rewarded for it. Associations can organise blood collection activities to help replenish the hospital blood banks.

“Do not take advantage of the volunteering blood donors,” he told reporters after the launching of MRC Kuching Chapter Flag Day at the Chief Minister’s office in Wisma Bapa Malaysia here yesterday.

Among those present were MRC Kuching Chapter advisor Datuk Abang Abdul Karim Tun Openg, its deputy chairman Dr Chou Chii Ming and honorary treasurer Lam Kam Soon.

Dr Rauf went on to say that all hospitals depended on NGOs to organise blood donation drives for them. Hence, all MRC units throughout the country work together with various associations such as St John Ambulance to hold blood donation drives.

“Hospitals have to ask for help from NGOs such as the MRC to organise blood donation drives due to insufficient staff,” he said.

He called on such associations to re-organise their function and work together with MRC.

On the flag day, he said MRC Kuching chapter hoped to raise RM30,000 this time, adding that the chapter spent more than RM50,000 to organise blood donations, which was its core business.