Journal of Family and Community Medicine

LETTERS TO EDITOR
Year
: 2016  |  Volume : 23  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 184--185

Promotion of voluntary blood donation among hospital employees


Nitin Agarwal, Prashant Pandey, Praveen Kumar 
 Department of Transfusion Medicine and Blood Bank, Jaypee Hospital, Sector 128, Noida, Uttar Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Nitin Agarwal
Jaypee Hospital, Sector 128, Noida, Uttar Pradesh
India




How to cite this article:
Agarwal N, Pandey P, Kumar P. Promotion of voluntary blood donation among hospital employees.J Fam Community Med 2016;23:184-185


How to cite this URL:
Agarwal N, Pandey P, Kumar P. Promotion of voluntary blood donation among hospital employees. J Fam Community Med [serial online] 2016 [cited 2022 Jan 26 ];23:184-185
Available from: https://www.jfcmonline.com/text.asp?2016/23/3/184/189136


Full Text

Sir,

A single unit of donated blood can save up to three lives; however, because of its limited shelf life, there is a need for constant blood donation. Relatives and friends of patients who require transfusion of blood and blood components usually constitute replacement donors. Under the guise of being friends or relatives of the patients, professional donors utilize this as an opportunity to donate and make money. Their relationship to patients cannot be verified by the blood bank staff. The emphasis has now rightly moved from a mere dependence on replacement blood donors to voluntary blood donations. Another issue is that many of the patients who come to our hospital are foreign with only one or two people attending to them and, therefore, are unable to provide the replacement blood required.

Thus, the need to promote voluntary blood donation among the staff of our hospital was mooted to motivate everyone to donate regularly. A meeting was held with the hospital management and a decision taken to give incentives to employees who donate to improve our voluntary blood donor registry. Apart from routine blood donation cards, donation certificate, and a token of appreciation, employees who donate blood would be given an extra day's leave in the next year. Therefore, every employee can have a total of 4 days leave for donating blood (blood donation leave) per year, provided he/she donates blood every 3 months. Furthermore, if an employee donates blood four or more times, he/she would also be entitled to a free health package from the hospital for himself/herself or a family member.

There were only 63 donations by hospital employees in the whole year, preceding the introduction of the incentive scheme in the hospital. In the 1 st year of its introduction, the blood bank had more than 150 donations in 8 months and expected to double this by the beginning of the next year. Not only there was an increase in the donors of whole blood but also the number of voluntary donors for platelet apheresis required for many patients (both national and foreign) especially during dengue outbreak increased considerably [Table 1].{Table 1}

Several economic and psychological studies have shown that incentives have negative effects on prosocial behaviors such as blood donation. [1],[2],[3] In a 2008 study, Ellingsen and Johannesson found that using incentives may indicate to the blood donors that blood banks had a mercenary agenda. [4] On the other hand, some studies have suggested that nonmonetary incentives such as social recognition and days off may encourage donors to make an extra donation per year. [5] Although this project is still in its early days, the evidence is that nonmonetary incentives such as paid time off work and health screening tests can be used to motivate potential blood donors.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

References

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2Benabou R, Tirole G. Incentives and prosocial behavior. Am Econ Rev 2006;96:1652-78.
3Ariely D, Bracha A, Meier S. Doing good or doing well? Image motivation and monetary incentives in behaving prosocially. Am Econ Rev 2008;99:7-9.
4Ellingsen T, Johannesson M. Pride and prejudice: The human side of incentive theory. Am Econ Rev 2008;98:990-1008.
5Lacetera N, Macis M. Incentives for altruism? The case of blood donation. Research-based policy analysis and commentary from leading economists; November, 2008. Available from: http://www.voxeu.org/index.php?q = node/2512 [Last accessed on 2016 Jun 17].