DC Prashant Kumar launches the virtual blood bank in Dhanbad on Sunday. Picture by Gautam Dey
Coal town Dhanbad launched what it proudly calls the state’s first “virtual blood bank” on Sunday by unveiling a website listing as many as 3,000 prospective donors and a helpline to assist harried relatives of patients in urgent need.
Developed by Rotary Club of Dhanbad, the website (www.rotarybloodbank.com) and helpline (91-7870787808) were inaugurated by deputy commissioner Prashant Kumar in the presence of club office-bearers including president Raviprit Singh Saluja.
Co-chairman of the project Kumar Manish highlighted the obvious advantages of such an initiative. First, those in need of blood urgently wouldn’t have to contact individual organisations separately, thereby saving precious time, sometimes the key factor between life and death.
“The website will save a lot of time, energy and money. Besides, it will ensure the patient requirement is fulfilled at the earliest,” said Manish.
The immediate plan is to extend the network of donors — from 3,000 now to around 5,000 — by contacting other organisations across the country and other Rotary and Rotract clubs in various towns of Dhanbad.
The website, the brainchild of club president Saluja, is the result of several collaborations spearheaded by Rotary.
Among those who pitched in were Red Cross Society, Dhanbad, Federation of Dhanbad Zilla Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Bank More Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Rotract Club of Guru Nanak College of Dhanbad, Union Club of Dhanbad, Dhanbad Club, Veer Khalsa Dal and Gujraati Samaj.
Saluja said all details had been worked out. “For instance, after donation by a particular donor, we will not call the same person for the next three months,” he said, adding that they would be organising periodic blood donation camps, too.
Patients in Dhanbad have access to four blood banks: Blood Bank of Patliputra Medical College and Hospital at Saraidhela with a capacity to stock 900 units, Jalan Hospital Blood Bank at Bartand with a capacity of 500 units, Dhanbad Blood Band at Chakraborty Nursing Home with a capacity of 300 units and Central Hospital Blood Bank of Jagjivan Nagar with a capacity of 500 units.
This apart, there are several donors’ associations like Voluntary Blood Donors’ Association of Jharkhand, ISM Students’ Society-run Blood Line and Rotract Club of BIT- Sindri all of whom organise regular donation camps.