Every Drop Counts

Posted On February 6, 2020

Cancer patients need your help, yes your help! According to The National Cancer Plan For The Maltese Islands (2017), every single year around 1800 individuals are diagnosed with cancer and by time that number is expected to rise.

Blood transfusion is an essential treatment for cancer patients and this can only be made possible by generous blood donors. Donating blood can be both life-saving and life changing especially for people who are currently battling cancer. By this donation, one is giving these people hope and the  opportunity to fight back.

People who take the required treatment have a risk of low blood counts and eventually they need units of blood. Some patients need blood as frequently as one blood bag per day. In every chemo session, the patient might need a total of two blood bags. Moreover, every individual is different and there are certain cases where people need either more or less.

Patients with low blood counts cannot continue the required treatment and therefore the treatment has to stop. Patients not taking the proper treatment and staying with low blood counts may end up having severe complications.

What does one need to become a donor?

  •  One needs a form of identification such as an ID card, Driving License or Passport
  •  One needs to be between 17 years – 65 years
  •  One needs to be more than 50 kilograms
  •  Females can donate blood every four months whereas males can donate every three months
  •  One needs to be in good health and does not suffer from any illnesses

After the donation, one is required to eat a healthy balanced diet especially rich in iron which is found in foods scubas spinach, broccoli and grains. The body easily replaces the liquid part within a day; however, it may take a couple of weeks to replace the red blood cells.

Martina Fenech, a 23 year old cancer survivor and such an inspirational woman not only to me personally but to many others, who still works hard towards helping organisations such as Puttinu Cares who has helped her in the past said that we should never be afraid of a tiny needle as there are parents, children and siblings waiting for that blood bag in order to give hope to their loved ones.

For more information, visit these websites below:

https://deputyprimeminister.gov.mt/en/nbts/Pages/Become-a-Donor/become-a-donor.aspx

https://deputyprimeminister.gov.mt/en/nbts/Pages/Home.aspx

Written by Michaela Cassar

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