World Blood Donor Day takes place on June 14 each year. The aim is to raise global awareness of the need for safe blood and blood products for transfusion and of the critical contribution voluntary, unpaid blood donors make to national health systems. The day also provides an opportunity to call to action to governments and national health authorities to provide adequate resources and put into place systems and infrastructures to increase the collection of blood from voluntary, non-remunerated blood donors.
Safe blood and blood products and their transfusion are critical aspects of care and public health. They save millions of lives and improve the health and quality of life of many patients every day. The need for blood is universal, but access to blood for all those who need it is not. Blood shortages are particularly acute in developing countries.
To ensure that everyone who needs safe blood has access to it, all countries need voluntary, unpaid donors who give blood regularly. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, despite limited mobility and other challenges, blood donors in many countries have continued to donate blood and plasma to patients who need a transfusion. During a time of unprecedented crisis, this extraordinary effort highlights the crucial role of well-organized, committed voluntary, non-remunerated blood donors in ensuring a safe and sufficient blood supply during normal and emergency times.