Monday, 17 February 2020

HSA appeals for blood donors as stock dips to low or critical levels during Covid-19 outbreak

With Singapore’s blood banks closely watching the screening of donors during the coronavirus outbreak, the authorities are appealing for healthy donors to give blood because stocks have dipped to low or critical levels.

In response to TODAY’s enquiries on Friday (Feb 14), the Health Sciences Authority (HSA), which manages Singapore’s blood banks, said: “Our blood stocks are currently trending downwards. We, therefore, strongly urge donors who are healthy and eligible to step forward as our patients really need your support during this challenging period.”

With extra precautions in place, such as stringent screening of donors before they are allowed into the blood banks, HSA said that the risk of contracting the novel coronavirus, Covid-19, while giving blood is assessed to be low.

The Singapore Red Cross said on its website that on Friday, stocks for the A+, B+, O+ and AB+ blood types were at “critical” levels, and those for the A-, B-, O- and AB- blood types were “low”.

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Can you get Coronavirus from a package shipped from China?

We have seen Reddit users question if shipments from China could pack more than shoppers asked for, and even Chinese companies themselves are trying to address these concerns.  But according to Dr. Amesh A. Adalja, Senior Scholar, Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, there's no way that coronavirus could infect a package and no reason to worry.

“The temperature of the air surrounding the packages and projects during shipping is not considered conducive to viral viability,” he told Tom’s Hardware.

His comments echo sentiments shared by the CDC, which says that it can use the behaviors of SARS and MERA, two other types of Coronavirus, as guidance for 2019-nCoV.

“In general, because of poor survivability of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from products or packaging that are shipped over a period of days or weeks at ambient temperatures,” the CDC’s FAQ page says.