All About Thalassemia

What is Thalassemia ?

The thalassemias are diverse group of genetic blood diseases characterised by absent or decreased production of normal hemoglobin, resulting in an anemia of varying degree.

Thalassemia is the most common inherited single gene disorder in the world. Scientists and public healths officials predict that thalassemia will become a worldwide issue in the next century. With global improvements in childhood disease prevention and treatment, more focus will be given to diagnosing disorders. It is our hope that by providing education about the disease we can raise awareness, encourage people to get tested for the trait, and spread knowledge about comprehensive treatment.


There are two types of thalassemias: Alpha and Beta, based on which globin chain in the hemoglobin molecule is affected. The severity of both types of thalassemia varies from a silent carrier state, where affected person carries the gene for Thalassemia without being overtly affected to most severe cases which can result in death of the baby in mother’s womb. In between are various grades of Thalassemia – Thalassemia Minor/Intermedia/Major

Alpha thalassemia—the alpha chain is affected
* Silent carrier—one gene affected
* Thalassemia trait—two genes affected
* Hemoglobin H disease—three genes affected
* Alpha hydrops fetalis—four genes affected, most severe form, results in fetal or newborn death

The Alpha Thalassemias are concentrated in South East Asia, Malaysia and Southern China. The Beta Thalassemias are seen primarily in the Mediterranean Sea area, Africa and South East asia. Due to global migration patters, there has been an increase in the incidence of thalassemia in North America in the last ten years

How Are Genes Inherited?
At the time of conception, a person receives one set of genes from the mother (egg) and a corresponding set of genes from the father (sperm). The combined effects of many genes determine some traits (hair color, and height for instance). Traits determined by a combination of genes often have gradations in magnitude (the difference between Michael Keaton and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, for instance). Other characteristics are determined by a single gene pair (a person’s sex, for instance). A person is either a biological male or female.

The inheritance pattern is complicated in patients with thalassemia because two sets of genes on different chromosomes cooperate to produce hemoglobin. A defect anywhere in this complex can produce thalassemia. The expression of thalassemia, therefore, more closely resembles that of height, with gradations in effect.


The inheritance pattern is complicated in patients with thalassemia because two sets of genes on different chromosomes cooperate to produce hemoglobin. A defect anywhere in this complex can produce thalassemia. The expression of thalassemia, therefore, more closely resembles that of height, with gradations in effect.

globin chains

Hemoglobin molecules which carries oxygen in the body is made up of two globin chains – Alpha and Beta chains in a 1:1 ratio. Production of these globin chains is under the control of genes. In the thalassemia patient, a mutation or deletion of the genes that control globin production occurs. This leads to a decreased production of the corresponding globin chains and an abnormal hemoglobin ratio. The abnormal ratio leads to decreased synthesis of hemoglobin and the expression of thalassemia. The globin that is produced in normal amounts winds up in excess and forms red cell aggregates of inclusions. These aggregates become oxidised and damage the cell membrane, leading to excessive breakdown of red cells, ineffective production of red cells in the bone marrow, or both. The quantity and properties of these globin chain aggregates determine the characteristics and severity of the thalassemia.

What is Thalassemia Minor ?
Your blood count may be a little lower than other people of your age and sex, but this produces no symptoms. You were born with this condition and you will have it all of your lifetime. There is no need for treatment and most people who have inherited this are not sick and probably do not know they have it. A mild form of Thalassemia minor may be mistaken for iron deficiency anemia. Iron medicines are not usually necessary and will not help your anemia. They could even be harmful if taken over a long period of time. If you marry a person who does not have Thalassemia Minor, your children may have Thalassemia Minor. If you marry a person who does have Thalassemia Minor, some of your children may have Thalassemia Major. You must decide if you want to take this risk in planning your family.


How common is Thalassemia Minor ?
About 3 – 6% of Americans of Italian and Greek descent have Thalassemia Minor. Thalassemia has also been found in people of many ethnic backgrounds, so it cannot be called a Mediterranean disease. Other areas affected are the Mid East, India, Pakistan and Southeast Asia.

  • What can you do if you have Thalassemia Trait?
    If you have thalassemia trait, you need not be concerned for your own health. However, you may be at risk of having a child with thalassemia major.
  • If your partner is tested and proved to have the normal type of hemoglobin, then no child born to the two of you can have thalassemia major.
  • If your partner does have thalassemia trait, you are at risk of having a child with thalassemia major. You can discuss the options available to you with your treating doctor.

Even if you have had children who do not have thalassemia major, you might still consider a test for your partner. If both parents have thalassemia trait, the risk of thalassemia major is the same for each pregnancy no matter how many children with normal hemoglobin or with thalassemia trait you have already had.

Wouldn’t it reassure you to know that you are free of the risk of having a child with thalassemia major?

What is Thalassemia Major ?
Thalassemia Major occurs when a person inherits two thalassemia genes, one from each parent. Thalassemia Major is a severe disease.

When BOTH parents have Thalassemia trait (Minor), the child may inherit

two normal hemoglobin genes
or one normal hemoglobin gene and one thalassemia gene
or two thalassemia genes

With EACH pregnancy there is a:


Complications from regular blood transfusions
Complications that may arise from regular blood transfusions include an overload of iron build up in vital causing diabetes, liver disease and heart
failure. The spleen may become so enlarged or overactive that it has to be remove surgically. In the past, many patients died in their teens due to these complications.


Thalassemia signs and symptoms may include:

  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Pale or yellowish skin
  • Facial bone deformities
  • Slow growth
  • Abdominal swelling
  • Dark urine

Several types of thalassemia exist, including alpha-thalassemia, thalassemia intermedia and Cooley anemia. The signs and symptoms you experience depend on the type and severity of your condition. Some babies show signs and symptoms of thalassemia at birth, while others may develop them during the first two years of life. Some people who have only one affected hemoglobin gene don’t experience any thalassemia symptoms. (sources: Mayo Clinic. See  references below) ¹

Read more from Nusruth Ebrahim Saib testimonial 

A few years ago, a medication called deferoxamine (Desferal)  was given to Thalassemia Major patients to remove iron from the body, and it must be given by slow infusions under the skin or in a vein over 10-12 hours five to seven times a week using a battery driven pump. in many countries this is still being used.

Hopefully, there is new oral form of medication named Asunra by Novartis that are now available and which reduces the painful removal of iron. It should be dissolved (not effervescent) in water or juice and should be taken everyday. Researchers are investigating two potentially curative treatments: bone marrow transplantation and gene therapy. Both methods have shown promise.

Thalassemia Major patients require in general MONTHLY blood transfusions

As per the above video on Thalassemia and this post, without blood transfusions, thalassemia major patients will not survive. Maintaining a safe and adequate blood supply is of great importance to the general public. Because those with a severe form of thalassemia require blood transfusions as often as every two weeks/ 3 weeks, the blood supply is of special importance to the thalassemia community.

There are more than 160 Thalassemia patients who require blood transfusions in Mauritius.  With increasing life expectancy and number of thalassemic patients, the need for safe blood is increasing too, but on the other hand the numbers of donors are decreasing due to aging of donor population, decline from younger people between 18 to 35 years old (due to indifference mostly, fear of needles !!!),  infections, changing moral values, etc. And there is an important gap between demand and blood supply.

More Blood Donors Needed
We URGE Mauritians to transgress all barriers (if ever) come forward to donate blood to people like the Thalassemia patients as well as other  complex and urgent treatment like cancer, cardiac patients undergoing surgery, accident victims, gynecology, a mother giving birth and an increased number of complex therapies like chemotherapy for cancer patients as mentioned above.

Our young Mauritians often forget for how many medical procedures blood is a vital necessity.  Probably the greatest incentives are that they understand by donating blood, they are saving lives !

Thalassemia Society Mauritius with the support of sponsors has  made lives easy with the support of Ministry of Health & Quality of Life by doting  Regional Hospitals (except Flacq) with a Day Care Thalassemia Ward (JNH, Ag. Jeetoo, SSRN and recently at Victoria Hospital, Candos).

Need Voice from Thalassemia Patients:
See the Page Testimonials on this page to share your experiences, to thank blood donors and your stories. send us an email with your full name, Telephone numbers, address and where you do treatment. If you are a minor, you need your responsible party/ies permission.

Further reading/watching:
(1) Thalassemia – The Untold Story 
(2) Beta Thalassemia
(3) Thalassemia (Mayo Clinic) (References ¹)
(4) Thalassemia documentary ( WARNING:  sensitive person better not watch !)
(5) Thalassemia in Pakistan (Urdu)







My name is Nusruth Ebrahim Saib. I was born with thalassemia major

My name is Nusruth Ebrahim Saib. I was born with thalassemia major patient since birth.
~ by Nusruth Ebrahim Saib
Well, thalassemia are inherited blood disorder. It causes the body to make fewer healthy red blood cells and less hemoglobin than normal. The main treatment for it, is regular blood transfusion which I do every 6 weeks to keep me healthy and alive.
When I get transfused, the whole process takes about 6 hours which means I have to do a lot of ‘’working around’’ to fit it in my schedule.

Nusruth Ebrahim Saib receiving blood transfusion at Victoria Hospital – Candos

There are a lot of complications associated with thalassemia, especially transfusion related iron overload which requires a daily drug treatment, and sometimes it can be scary knowing that excess iron will damage my heart, spleen, liver and other organs if I can’t get it out. Rightly due to regular blood transfusion, I have got an excess of Iron in my body which I had to underwent a spleen ectomy surgery and after some years later my bones became weak and had to do a leg surgery too.

From infancy to age 20 years old, I would have to take a medicine called deferoxamine. The only way to take this particular medicine is to inject it into your body over a long period of time, about 8 hours which was painful and boring too.  Now, instead of injections, I take a new oral medicine called “ asunra “ that I take every morning which make my schedule  more flexible.

 Blood donation is literally a lifeline for those who need regular transfusions like thalassemia, luckemia and other cases. For me, BLOOD IS A UNIQUE GIFT OF LIFE. “It gives me the opportunity to live. It gives me the opportunity  to go to work. It gives me the opportunity to be happy.  It gives me the opportunity to study, to travel and to get a job, and all for a bit of telly, a milkshake and so on…

Blood is the most precious gift that anyone can give to another person — the gift of life. A decision to donate your blood can save a life, or even several if your blood is separated into its components — red cells, platelets and plasma — which can be used individually for patients with specific conditions.

 I would like to encourage people to come and donate blood and save lives.“Every single bag of blood is priceless.

“Many people don’t realise that blood donation is a matter of life and death, and thank God for donors “.

“I don’t know whose transfused blood I received, so as far as I’m concerned, but every blood donor save my life. From me and my family- thank you for taking a small amount of your time to give me the rest of my life.” Dear Donor.

Lire plus – Articles de Presse sur Nusruth Ebrahim Saib
1. 5-Plus Magazine

Celebrate Valentine’s day with a difference.

February is indeed a special month not because it may be the shortest but in Mauritius, there are many religious festivals  that are celebrated in Mauritius and for those who celebrate St Valentine Day, it’s a special moment to make a difference !


Share the love; Give Blood this Valentine Day and make it special for the first time in Mauritius.

Just think that the one you cherished and love be he or she or like yours, how many others could not celebrate as they are fighting for their lives. Think of a Cancer patient for example how hard it is, think about a cardiac patient who needs blood to be able to do his or her surgery. Think of a Thalassemia kid who need blood transfusion every 3 weeks, else that person’s life will be in great danger.

There is an urgent need for blood types O positive, O negative, A negative and B negative. Eligible donors with these blood types are strongly encouraged to make an appointment to give in the coming days.

Share love, share blood: Celebrate Valentine’s day with a difference

If you are wondering about the perfect gift for your loved one or your Valentine.  Instead of  the roses,  chocolate box or spending time on SMS’s, why not celebrate this Valentine Day by donating blood and save lives?

You can make a difference and show your love for humanity. This is perhaps the greatest gift you can give.


Share the love; Give Blood this Valentine Day and make it special for the first time in Mauritius.

Just think that the one you cherished and love be he or she or like yours, how many others could not celebrate as they are fighting for their lives. Think of a Cancer patient for example how hard it is, think about a cardiac patient who needs blood to be able to do his or her surgery. Think of a Thalassemia kid who need blood transfusion every 3 weeks, else that person’s life will be in great danger.

There is an urgent need for blood types O positive, O negative, A negative and B negative. Eligible donors with these blood types are strongly encouraged to make an appointment to give in the coming days. You may also give apheresis donation.

Appeal to the public to donate rare blood group

Human blood is universally recognized as the most precious and essential element of human life. The collection of blood from voluntary, non-remunerated blood donors is an important measure for ensuring the availability and safety of blood transfusion. Adequate and safe blood supply is a demanding challenge in developing countries like Mauritius.

NBTS (National Blood Transfusion Service (Mauritius) appeals to the public to roll up their sleeves and help remedy a critical shortage of blood. Blood Groups A +, A Neg, O + and O Neg, B Neg are needed.

Demand for blood is growing up every year … yet fewer people are donating. Indeed, this is a major concern with an ageing population.

Cancer patients, cardiac patients, Thalassemic, accident victims and many other complex medical procedures require blood transfusions. Demand is higher than supply! Most of our blood donors were between the age of 40 + a few years ago and they have been consistent and loyal donors and now caught by age are likely to donate blood. With medical advances, there has been a rise in procedures that use blood like cardio-vascular surgeries, cancer treatments, and sadly an alarmingly rise in accidents whereby more blood is needed.

There is also a soaring rise in people infected with TTI mostly by drug addicts and other life-style behaviors and these people should understand that they should not donate blood as even if all laboratory tests are done, due to window period, they should not donate blood and put other people’s lives at risks.

Mauritians must understand that with an ageing population and a decline in blood donors at the rate of about 25 to 40%, anybody in their family or themselves could need blood in their life and it is thus crucial, moral to donate blood especially from healthy and safe donors that are not at risks of TTI (Transfusion Transmissible Infections like AIDS, Hep B and C, STD’s (Sexually Transmitted diseases) and irregular antibodies.

People wishing to donate blood can contact us: 427 7192 or 424 4766, 427 0711 (to organise a blood drive).

Mr Rohit Teeluckdharry, Blood Donor Coordinator: 5254 3932
Motivators: 52579293/5915 5152/ 5766 6160
Nursing Staffs/Admin: Messrs Sanjeev Goomannee & Nemraz Juggoo:
5769 5621/576504371

Donated blood can be lifesaving for persons who have lost large amounts of blood because of serious accidents, new medical and surgical procedures, as well as for patients who have become severely anemic because of serious hematological diseases or treatments such as cancer therapy. Therefore, availability of blood is an important concern to the society and as we are celebrating shortly our 50th Anniversary of our Independence, young blood donors who are our pace setters are urgently needed. It’s time for action. ” More Blood , more life” was the theme for World Blood Donor Day 2011.

Just 1.8 to 2% per cent of the Mauritian population is supporting the need of patients across the country. It is time for Mauritians to come forward as one People One Nation and donate blood regularly and help saving many lives.

We are celebrating our 50th Anniversary of our Independence. We hope that Mauritians  will  not remain insensible and indifference BUT will make a difference in the lives of our elders, all our patients and donate safe blood . This will be a great step ahead and we will be proud as a nation.

A sincere thanks to our blood donors, volunteers, organizers, our Facebook supporters and Fans, our Blood Bank Staffs.



Yes for our Community – 5 reasons why you need consider giving blood !

Blood donation is a simple way to help save lives. An average of 150 to 175 units of blood are needed  everyday day, and on some occasions, a single patient has been transfused more than 40 units of blood. An accident victim may even need more.

“Yes” to our community, because the only source of blood is a human donor.  And, like it or not, that’s means it’s up to each one of us. Giving blood makes it possible for many people to lead normal healthy lives.  Every year thousands of patients require blood transfusions, because they are undergoing surgery, recovering from cancer or have been in a serious accident.  Blood plays a vital role and it is irreplaceable.

Patients rarely receive whole blood donations. More often, blood is broken down into components:

  • Red cells are used for accident victims and surgery patients.
  • Platelets are used for treatment of cancer, leukemia, and aplastic anemia, as well as open heart surgery and other treatments.
  • Plasma is used for shock and burn victims.
  • Cryoprecipitated, AHF, (cryo) is used for patients with bleeding diseases, such as hemophilia.

There is a good chance that you or someone you love might need someone else’s blood to stay alive. One out of every three people will need a blood transfusion in their lifetime.

In order to meet the needs of sick and injured people in the communities we serve, NBTS -Candos needs ample supplies of many different blood types at all times. We need at least a buffer stock for 7 days. It has been very critical moment during the New Year and during the Cyclone Berguitta and bad weather whereby our blood drives were cancelled. However, patients needs blood everyday and many are dependent on your donations to have their lives saved.

A few years ago, the haunting memory of the accident at Pailles whereby many people were wounded and a few sadly had lost their lives. Many people were saved  and fortunately, we just passed the sporadic but acute blood shortage a week earlier.

Reasons to donate blood

Reason # 1. On Average every 15 minutes a person is being transfused in Mauritius (based on the requirement of 150 to 175 pints daily). If 60% of our population can donate blood, yet, only 1.8% donate blood. If 5% would have donated blood, there would have not been blood shortage in Mauritius and this means there would have no stress from patients, accident victims, Thalassemia patients, Cancer and other medical related issues whereby blood is needed.

We encourage you or your organization to host a blood drive. You could even do it at the level of your socio-cultural organization.

# 2. Up to three persons could be saved from one pint of blood as there are blood derivatives or blood components that are derived or prepared from a unit of blood: Platelets, Plasma, Red Blood Cells. Cryoprecipitate is also produced but we import that as it is an expensive and is very complex. This is given for example to hemophilia patients. A typical unit of blood lasts for just 35 days, but in some cases such as blood used for very young children; this blood must be used within 5 days of it’s collection.


# 3. Donating blood is very easy.

# 4. A few reasons we are given by people who don’t donate blood are:
“Mo pas enan le temps – I don’t have time” “I am afraid of needles – mo per zeguilles”. Blood donation is an opportunity to volunteer, rather than be drafted. Wouldn’t it feel good to put out your arm for a cause and walk away knowing you’ve contributed to the good health of someone other than yourself? Please click here

# 5. Cancer patients have increased and they need blood for their survival.Many of them will need blood, sometimes daily during their chemotherapy treatment. We have an ageing population, it is important for the youths and younger generation to come forward and do their community service by saving lives.

Join all the other blood donors to donate blood because you never know when you may need it or one of your loved ones. Just do it !



Did you know of the Positive effects to a blood donor ?

Apart from saving a life or lives, apart from feeling  positive vibration, there are many advantages for a blood donor. The first and foremost advantage of donating blood is, no doubt, the good feeling of having saved someone’s life. But keeping the moral side of it aside for a moment, blood donation has many medical advantages for the donor as well.

Blood Donation and Iron Content

Blood donation is an excellent way to reduce the amount of iron accumulated in our body. While iron is, without doubt, a necessary mineral, excess iron can stimulate the formation of free radicals, which can cause damage to body tissues. Free radicals are also associated with cancer. The excess iron brings about oxidization of cholesterol, which is harmful for the arteries. Hemochromatosis is a genetic disease characterized by excess accumulation of iron in the tissues due to improper metabolism. The disease damages many important organs, such as the pancreas, adrenal glands, etc. It may also cause diabetes, liver disease and heart diseases. Donating blood on a regular basis helps regulate the level of iron in the donor’s body. Studies have shown that regular blood donation can be beneficial for the circulatory system and can reduce the risk of heart diseases.

Myth about women donating blood?
For many women, the old age myth that because of their menstrual cycle, they lose iron and if they donate blood, they can become anemic or got health issues. In fact, this is far from truth !

Parameters to Know Before Donating Blood
The process of blood donation includes a free medical checkup for the donor. Before donating blood, the donor’s hemoglobin level is tested. If it is found to be lower than 12.5 g/dL (for women and 13.5g/dL for men), it isn’t safe for the donor. The blood pressure is also checked and if it is  low or too high, the donor will be  deferred temporarily and will be asked to  call again in a month or so?

There are also other causes like  having done a tattoo/ or piercing less than 6 months, being on antibiotics (need to wait at least 7 days until full recovery), and the life-style and behaviour of the donor who are at risk of having TTI (A Transfusion transmitted infection (TTI) is a virus, parasite, or other potential pathogen that can be transmitted in donated blood through a transfusion to a recipient.)

BURNS CALORIES. Giving one pint of blood can burn up to 650 calories. Not a weight loss plan, of course, being that you should wait 90 Days between donations and weigh at least 110 pounds (45 Kgs for women and 50 kgs for men)

LOWERS RISK OF CANCER. High levels of iron have been implicated in cancer. Blood donation removes some of this iron from your system and decreases your risk for liver, lung, colon, and throat cancers.

PRESERVES CARDIOVASCULAR HEALTH. Excessive iron oxidation and blood viscosity can increase also the risk of heart attack and strokes. Thankfully, in a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), researchers found that participants ages 43 to 61 had fewer heart attacks and strokes when they donated blood every six months.

STIMULATES NEW BLOOD CELLS. Your body will replenish the blood cells lost during the donation, which helps maintain good health.

Don’t let excuses get over you. Remove “mo peur zeguilles or mo enan trypanophobia,  mo presser mo pas enan le temps (don’t have time even when one knows  just 7 minutes of your time, you can save up to three lives).

“People often forget for how many medical procedures blood is a vital necessity”.

If you want to know whether you can give blood or not, please call our Head in Charge, Dr Mrs Sonoo on 424 0650 or cell: 5257 4739. You can email us as well:

How to Organize a Blood Donation ?

Hosting a blood donation is  partnering with Blood Bank. If each blood donation saves up to three lives, imagine how many you can save at your own blood drive. Hosting a blood drive gives you the chance to get your whole community involved and make an even bigger impact on the lives of others. For your organization, it shows your commitment, dedication to make a difference in people’s lives. In order to ensure a rich and diversified blood supply with the greatest number of specific blood types, we rely on the support of donors from our Rainbow Nation and various cultural communities. It is essential to reach all communities. Mauritians should unite and save lives in solidarity.



Contact Blood Bank
Call our Blood Donors Recruitment’s Office on Tel/Fax: 427 0711 or send us an email to:  and copy to  and see if the date you or your organization wants to host the blood drive is available.

Provide the following:
Name of Organizer:
Modes: Couches or Caravan
Contact person/s + Landline + Mobile numbers
Expected Number of pints to be collected:

Finalize a Venue
We can organize the camp in a college, corporate office and residential area, a Village Hall/Community Centre, a Socio-Cultural Organization or a Public place. If you cannot find a properly ventilated location inside the building (for couches), we can also provide depending on the availability our Mobile Blood Caravan. Blood donation booking is done on First Come First Serve basis !

Confirm a Date
Finalize a date one – two months in advance. But even if it’s less than that, you can always check with us the availability. 

Spread the Word
Through signs, word-of-mouth, emails and more, let others near you know what is going on.

Start Signing Up Donors (If within your organization) Not possible for open or public donation (At the University, it is besides being done in Mauritius)
Send an email to anyone interested to give and have them sign up for a time slot. Don’t worry, walk-ins are always welcome to give blood.

Get a Group Involved
Get people to help you set up and get others excited. Have your team help you come up with unique ways to make your drive even more fun.

Show your Appreciation
At your drive, make sure every donor knows how much it means to you that they show up.

We’re Here to Help
If you have any questions during the process, talk to us … BUT not on the eve of your blood drive !


Once the blood bank is contacted, the Blood Bank Coordinator or a Motivator will help the person organizing the blood drive. The representative will ask a number of questions that will enable him or her to help the blood drive organizer plan a successful blood drive.

The organizer should be prepared to answer the following questions:

  • What is the goal or mission of the group or organization?
  • How big is the organization and where is it located?
  • Additional questions may be asked to ensure that the organizer’s group meets the blood bank’s requirements.

If within the organization, whether it will be a Blood Mobile Caravan or inside (which we encourage as the Caravan in summer gets very hot inside)

For a blood donation we need the following:

  • Water facility
  • Electricity 
  • Toilet for both donors and blood bank staffs
  • Eventually a space of about 15ft x ft whereby 4 couches will be fitted
  • At least 3 tables: one for Donor Registration, one for HB Tests  and one to serve refreshments
  • A few chairs around 15

Once the representative has determined that an organization meets the requirements, the organizer and the blood drive representative begins to plan the actual blood drive. It is important that you get as many people to participate.

Often Organizers just do a booking for blood donation, provide too much long hours when at the end, it is not cost-effective with less donors attending.  If a company has some 200 employees, about 15 to 20% (sometimes less) may likely donate blood. A well organized blood donation where people at all levels are involved and encouraged to form a group, it has greater impact and is successful. Everything depends on the organizational factor. The pyramidal hierarchy from upper management to other levels should be involved. 

Blood Bank Motivator can come a week prior to the drive make a 20 – 30 minutes presentation on What is Blood and the Importance of Blood Donation followed by 5 minutes Questions & Answers (Q&A)


Commitment Form
The organizer can circulate a form with the heading : I commit to save a life
in three columns has the Name, Unit/Department and Signature and Telephone

Blood donor recruiters/Motivators will provide materials like Pamphlets and Posters. BUT the organizers can also make their own Posters like MRA, General Construction and so on. The following outline provides general tips for conducting a blood drive and ensuring its success:

Work with executive staff/HR to provide staff with one hour of time off to donate
Build a committee that includes members from all parts of the organization to help get the word out. Ask people who have donated blood before to help organize the drive – they often make the best recruiters.
Advertise two to three weeks in advance using various marketing materials and direct methods that include:
Posters – displayed in high traffic areas
Brochures – make available during briefings and in high traffic areas

Briefings/presentations/announcements – as appropriate in meetings, in the organization’s newsletter
Table Tents 
Email – when possible
Sign up donors, allowing enough time for all donors to complete the process
Get donors to the donation site
Keep in touch with donor center staff
Ensure donors have had adequate fluids and have eaten prior to donating
Follow up after the blood drive by making sure the committee is thanked and the blood drive’s success is reported in the organization newsletter.
Thank everyone involved either by certificates or simply a Thank you letter.
Book the next drive right away! It is NEVER too early to schedule future drives.

For more information, please contact us as follows:-

National Blood Transfusion Service
Candos – Mauritius

Tel: 427 0711/ 427 7192 /424 4766/ 424 0650
Email: and

Head in Charge: Dr Mrs Sonoo – 424 0650
Blood Donor Coordinator: 427 0711/ Mobile: 5254 3932
Motivators: Ashish Purmanund – 5 915 5152
Pravesh Rawoo –        5 257 9293
Raj Sunmukhiya        5 766 1160


APPEL URGENT AUX DONNEURS DE SANG: on manque de réserves pour couvrir les besoins des malades

APPEL URGENT AUX DONNEURS DE SANG: on manque de réserves pour couvrir les besoins des malades

Le Centre de Transfusion Sanguin (La Banque de Sang) lance un appel URGENT aux Mauriciens de témoigner de leur solidarité et de se mobiliser massivement pour faire don de leur sang car, due aux mauvais temps depuis le nouvel an et au passage de cyclone Berguitta, nos collectes de sang ont du étre annuler.

Cette pénurie de sang en général s’explique par le fait que les donneurs se font de plus en plus rares surtout les jeunes donneurs alors que la demande en sang ne cesse d’augmenter

Nous n’avons pratiquement pas de stocks en produits sanguins. Nous avons besoin très URGENT le sang du group O, A et B et du rhésus négatif O, A et B.

Les hôpitaux doivent continuer à traiter les malades et blessés qui doivent être transfusés.

Nous sollicitons la gentilesse des Mauriciens à se présenter à la Banque de Sang à Candos et les banques de sang dans les hôpitaux régionaux (Dr AG Jeetoo- Port Louis, JNH – Rose Belle, Centre de Flacq, SSRN – Pamplemousses) de 9:00AM à 15:30 hrs.

Il faut être en bonne santé et avoir au moins 18 ans. Se munir aussi de sa carte d’identité.

La Banque de sang rappelle que les dons de sang doivent être réguliers et constants car la durée de vie des produits sanguins est limitée (5 jours pour les plaquettes, 35 jours pour les globules rouges).

150 – 175 dons de sang (pintes de sang) sont nécessaires chaque jour pour répondre aux besoins des malades dans le pays.

Donner son sang, c’est facile, sain et sans aucuns risque et ça sauve des vies.

Un seul peuple, une seule nation: UNISSONS NOUS POUR SAUVER DES VIES.

                                               MERCI !

Vous pouvez nous joindre sur les numéros suivants:-
424 7192/ 424 4766/ 424 0650/ 427 0711 (pour organiser une collecte de sang)

Apheresis donors of blood components who are Special Lifesaving Heroes URGENTLY NEEDED !

What is Apheresis?

Apheresis is the process of separating blood into its different components: Platelets, Red Blood Cells (RBCs) and Plasma. Platelet donations allow us to collect what our patients need and return the rest of the blood to the donor.

” Sometimes, patients need only a specific part of a donor’s blood. To help these people, donations of individual blood components such as platelets or plasma are sometimes required. Such donations are known as apheresis donations.

The extraction of only platelets from a donor’s blood is known as plateletpheresis, while plasmapheresis refers to the extraction of a donor’s plasma.” ¹

Read more on Platelets and Platelets Apheresis donation

Apheresis donors are special and extraordinary persons. They are called upon to make special donation of selective components instead of whole blood donation. They can make platelets, plasma or red blood cells. This being said, they can also give whole donation and after 15 days give platelets.

Why Apheresis donation?

Apheresis donations are an essential part of treatment for patients with cancer and other life-threatening medical conditions. By becoming an apheresis donor, you can make a huge contribution to these critically-ill patients with special transfusion needs. As mentioned above,  Cancer patients needs platelets due to their low level of platelets which is essential in blood clotting. Platelet transfusions are routinely needed to support patients undergoing cancer therapy, open-heart surgery, organ transplantation, and for patients with bleeding disorders. Platelets have a very short shelf-life and must be transfused within five days of collection. This requires constant replenishment of the blood bank supply. Platelet donations can be  donated up to 24 times a year.

What the Apheresis Machine does?

Instead of collecting a unit (about a pint) of your blood as a whole, donations can be made for only the component that is needed most by local patients. These donations are made through an automated process known as apheresis. This process collects whole blood from the donor, isolates the needed component, then returns the remaining components along with a saline solution back to the donor.

This is done in about 6 cycles. It separates the needed component, say platelets and return everything to your body. While, a blood donation is about 7 minutes, Apheresis for platelets is about 60-90 minutes max and Plasma Apheresis is about 45 minutes.

It’s like a blood donation, SAFE, NO PAIN AT ALL and is done by a sophisticated machine.

What is Plasma?

Plasma is the pale yellow type of the liquid portion in which are suspended red blood cells, platelets and other components. Blood plasma is a yellowish coloured liquid component of blood that normally holds the blood cells in whole blood in suspension. Plasma is the single largest component of human blood, comprising about 55 percent, and contains water, salts, enzymes, antibodies and other proteins.


Plasma carries out a variety of functions in the body, including clotting blood, fighting diseases and other critical functions.

Source plasma is plasma that is collected from healthy, voluntary donors through a process called plasmapheresis and is used exclusively for further manufacturing into final therapies (fractionation). Source plasma donors may be compensated for their time and effort.

” Plasma donation requires a commitment both in the amount of time for each donation and frequency of donation. Typically it takes between one and three hours to donate source plasma, and plasma can be donated twice within a seven day period. Whole blood donation takes less time—under 30 minutes—and donors donate less frequently—no more than once in eight weeks. The programs may fit into a donor’s life differently at various times in the donor’s life, and are equally important in helping to fulfill a vital medical need.” Continue reading