By Daniel Edu
The Federal Ministry of Health’s Permanent Secretary, Ms. Kachollom Daju, has emphasized the pivotal role of innovation in enhancing the safety, availability, and effectiveness of blood transfusion in Nigeria. This statement was made during the 50th-anniversary celebration and Annual General and Scientific Meeting held in Abuja, themed ‘Our Past, Our Present, Our Future’.
Represented by Dr. Kingsley Odiabara, Director of the Medical Laboratory Services Division, Daju pointed out that advancements in science and technology are opening new avenues in the field of blood transfusion. These advancements range from improved compatibility testing to the creation of artificial blood products.
Daju emphasized that these innovative strides are key to elevating the quality of blood transfusion services in Nigeria. However, she stressed the importance of addressing the safety and quality of blood and blood products, urging the medical society to collaborate with the National Blood Transfusion Commission (NBTC).
She called upon attendees to commit to the noble objective of ensuring accessible and affordable blood transfusions for all citizens in need, without compromising safety. Daju also underscored the significance of nurturing a robust culture of blood donation and establishing a strong donation infrastructure, as donors play a crucial role in the blood transfusion system.
Recognizing blood transfusion as a cornerstone of modern medicine, Daju commended its profound impact on healthcare, portraying it as a lifeline for countless patients and a testament to both scientific progress and the selflessness of donors.
Addressing the medical society, Daju urged them to expand their efforts beyond conventional practices and film readings. She urged them to explore innovative concepts and product development that align with Nigeria’s pool of expertise. She emphasized Nigeria’s role as a leader in Africa and encouraged the society to spearhead technological advancements.
The meeting’s Chairman, Dr. Jafar Momoh, lauded the society’s 50-year journey, characterizing it as a beacon of excellence that has advanced medical knowledge and technology to enhance healthcare not only within Nigeria but also on a global scale. The meeting’s theme, ‘Our Past, Our Present, Our Future’, was seen as a rallying cry to utilize scientific and technological advancements to propel the field forward.
Dr. Momoh stressed the importance of innovation, extending its scope beyond laboratories and operating rooms to encompass patient engagement, education, and advocacy. He encouraged raising public awareness about voluntary blood donation’s significance in saving lives.
Dr. Omale Amedu, Director-General of the NBTC, highlighted the commission’s role in regulating and coordinating blood and blood product availability in Nigeria. He emphasized that blood services must align with high expectations and that blood’s crucial role in medicine makes the society integral to the healthcare sector. He challenged the society to actively support the NBTC’s initiatives and contribute to their success.