The new blood bank on the Saraidhela campus of Patliputra Medical College and Hospital on Thursday. (Gautam Dey)
Come October 15, Dhanbad’s lone blood bank will have a new address.
A bigger, better blood bank, ready with a five-year licence, will start functioning on the Patliputra Medical College and Hospital (PMCH) campus in Saraidhela in compliance with Medical Council of India (MCI) guidelines.
According to MCI norms, a blood bank should be set up on the premises of the medical college concerned. However, the existing blood bank in Dhanbad is situated on the sadar hospital campus. Now, it will be closed and its facilities shifted to the new blood bank, which will also have a component separator and increased storage capacity.
The sadar hospital blood bank in-charge, Prakash Kumar Singh, said that five refrigerators of 300 units capacity each had been bought in addition to three existing refrigerators that will be shifted to the Saraidhela facility.
Besides, work on installing a blood component separator provided by National AIDS Control Organisation (Naco) is underway. The existing unit at sadar hospital in Hirapur is equipped with a facility for blood transfusion but component transfusion requires a separator, which it lacks.
“We will seek a separate licence from Central Drug Standards Control Organisation for operating the component separator at PMCH,” said Singh, adding they were waiting to receive a few more parts of the Rs 1.5-crore machine.
Other facilities such as ELISA (enzyme linked immunosorbent assay) reader — a test for immune response to virus, bacteria, antigen that attack the body — three donor pouches (two newly procured), a mobile blood van and lab equipment will be ferried from Hirapur to the Saraidhela unit.
Naco had offered the Rs 15-lakh mobile van, which includes four refrigerating chambers with a capacity of storing 125 units each and a small generator, in October 2011.
Dhanbad legislator Mannan Mullick had contributed from his MLA fund to provide the 20KVA generator.
“We have adequate manpower with three doctors, six lab technicians, four lab attendants, a counsellor and fourth grade staff to run the new blood bank,” Singh added.
He pointed out that the average requirement of blood in Dhanbad was around 50 to 60 units per month.
The existing capacity of the blood bank at sadar hospital is 900 units but the officials maintain a stock of barely 100 units. Singh reasoned that donated blood has a shelf life of only a month and it is too precious to be wasted. The blood bank at Saraidhela will have a capacity to store 2,400 units.
The blood bank at sadar hospital was established back in 1959. It obtained a licence in 2000 in accordance with the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940.
State president of IMA A.K. Singh welcomed the move, but opined that the existing unit at sadar hospital should continue to function as it is located in the heart of the city.
Is the new blood bank equipped to deal with emergencies?