By Sukuoluhle Ndlovu
The National Blood Services Zimbabwe (NBSZ) will resume normal blood supply to hospitals from the 5th of June.
NBSZ had been affected by the Covid -19 pandemic which led to the serious shortage of critical imported consumables such as test kits and blood bags.
In a statement NBSZ Public Affairs Manager (Spokesperson), Esther Masunda said that the current blood shortages are not due to lack of donors.
“We are expecting arrival of part of these critical supplies by Friday 5June 2020 which will lead to us work all weekend in order for normal services to resume by Monday 8June 2020. Our laboratories will remain operational throughout the weekend to clear any testing backlog and ensure that there is some normalcy on the supply of blood to the hospitals.
“We would like to advise the public, blood donors, business associates and all health institutions that our supply of blood and blood products to the health institutions in Zimbabwe is currently constrained due to shortage of imported critical consumables such as test kits and blood bags owing to serious funding and procurement challenges,” she said.
The ban on international flights has caused a serious constrain on the operations of the company.
“Due to Covid -19 pandemic, the procurement of these critical items has been delayed due to logistics challenges caused by international travel restrictions, which has led to the scarcity of cargo flights. Most of the critical items that are used to produce a safe unit of blood services in Africa.”
NBSZ expressed its gratitude to its donors who continuously donated blood even during the national lockdown period.
Relevant authorities will be engaged in order to resolve the funding and logistics challenges.