Every inch and responsively inspired to save someone’s life, the MHAM student-donors once again contributed bags of blood units in a community-based blood donation drive in partnership with DOH-R7 which was held at the MHAM Library Extension last September 12, 2018 from 9:00 in the morning to 8:00 in the evening.
Dubbed as “Abuno 2018”, the blood donation drive with one hundred ninety-five (195) bags of blood units being collected from the silent modern heroes of MHAM will be used for the VSMMC patients who are in need of blood transfusion with financial constraints who can pay at a later time.
A voluntary practice that MHAM has pioneered and has been adopted over the years by other medical schools in Cebu City in coordination with the Association of Philippine Medical Colleges-Student Network (APMC-SN), the life saving project in achieving safe and quality blood supply for the community was well-supported by the MHAM Student Body who willingly waited for their turns in the midst of grueling bimonthly examinations.
According to the VSMMC Medical Technologist II, Mr. Randall Joey Angob, the MHAM-held Blood Donation Drive was a component of the National Volunteer Blood Services Program of DOH-7 Regional Blood Center with the DOH’ thrust to save lives of millions of Filipinos at all times as the need for blood remains high all year round.
“We are very thankful to MHAM for supporting this program for how many years in cooperation with APMC. First and foremost, the significance of this endeavor is to give an opportunity to our future doctors to realize how important blood donation is, which later on they will be the ones to use it to their future patients. At the same time, we want them to understand the culture of blood donation drive that sometimes blood donors are tempted to give blood to expect something in return. We want to inculcate this value at a young age because nowadays donations are polluted with benefits”, Angob said in an interview.
Angob, who led the DOH-VSMMC blood campaign, added that the endeavor was also assisted by the MHAM senior medical clerks who completed the team. As the current Medical Technologist II in VSMMC, he also emphasized that the campaign also aimed to correct the unfounded fallacies and myths towards blood donation. “It is indeed important to educate the people about blood donation due to misconceptions and at the same time we are trying to increase the availability of blood all the time because even if the government will provide new technological machines and facilities but if we lack blood supply these technologies are just worthless. This week we have a high need of blood because there are group of physicians who will perform surgeries in the medical mission in partnership with the Cebu Rotary Club”, he concluded.
MHAM, being one of the top ten agencies in Cebu who contributed bags of blood units in a record-breaking mobile blood donation in September 2017, has been awarded with a plaque and certificate of appreciation by the DOH-VSMMC Region VII Blood Center with the Pantaleon Villegas Award, also known as Leon Kilat Award last April this year for its invaluable participation and contribution in the blood drive campaign.
Among those who brought a ray of hope to save someone’s life was Rowiza Jalani who happily expressed that blood donation drive helps people by providing blood to those in need and makes blood donation easier, accessible, and convenient for those who want to donate by bringing the event to the willing donors.
A Cebu City resident and a third year student-donor who also donated blood last February this year, she was one of those who fully believed that blood donation gives a sense of fulfillment and satisfaction from a donor’s perspective knowing that the blood can save a person’s life.
Being one of the donors who were qualified for the eligibility criteria, 26-year old Jalani earnestly desires to pursue her childhood dream in order to help improve other people’s lives and for her, becoming part of a heroic mission to save lives through voluntary donation for the second time, has ignited her motivation to continue to donate blood in the future.
“Donating blood makes a person healthier because it stimulates the body to produce new, and fresh blood cells. But more than that, knowing that a bag of my own blood could mean so much to a person I don’t even know by extending his or her life is more than enough reason for me to do it again and again”, Jalani said in an interview.
Knowing that her own blood can create a difference to someone who is battling over life and death, the life saving to life changing mission which she participated and will definitely participate in the next endeavor inspires her to be well-motivated to brave all the challenges in her medical journey in pursuance of a noble dream. “The main reason why I took up Medicine is to help others in need. By donating blood, I am able to serve my purpose and make a difference. It is like giving a person another chance in life, more time with their loved ones, another shot to make their dreams come true, and an opportunity to help others”, she added with a smile.
Meanwhile another blood letting activity was conducted at the same venue last September 13, 2018 in partnership with Philippine Red Cross and Eastern Visayas Regional Blood Center Cebu Chapter.
Coming together to bleed for a noble deed, the student-donors who were not able to participate the DOH7 blood donation drive voluntarily answered the call for the Red Cross blood bank because where the heart is, the simple act of caring is heroic that naturally runs in the blood of MHAM future doctors.
With the blood units being collected within the school campus from 9:00 in the morning to 3:00 in the afternoon, the blood letting activity was spearheaded by the Philippine College of Surgeons Cebu-Eastern Visayas Chapter.
As donated blood becomes the lifeline in an emergency and for people who need long-term treatments at anytime and anywhere, the two separate blood letting activities have truly helped to cope up the demand for blood transfusion particularly in the province where MHAM has been one of the active participating schools who made the program more meaningful and significant to distinguish.
Raising the power of humanity with the same conviction that blood connects us all, each undertaking lived and shared by the very people who took time to donate blood at multiple locations is beyond doubt heroic in these present times. (Ana Liza Abao)