Visited a malaria endemic area recently and intend to donate blood? HSA clarifies…

I’m going to donate whole blood, as usual, next week and was filling in the e-form at the HSA webpage. I suppose it is not that critical now, as pressure at this centre has been relieved by the opening of the new blood bank at Dhoby Ghaut. Still, if it helps.

The updated travel advisory published in May is integrated into the blood donation questionnaire. It comes up in the section on travel and you can check if you have been to a malaria endemic area, using this map at the CDC webpage:

CDC Malaria Endemic areas

This is not applicable to me at this point of time as I hardly move out of campus from August to November, except to local field sites. Malaria is not known to occur in Singapore, our burden is dengue.

The advisory is quite clear for travellers:

“Donors without any history of stay for least 6 consecutive months (in their lifetime) in a malaria endemic area but have travelled and returned from a malaria endemic area less than four (4) months from the day of screening will be asked to come back at least four (4) months later.”

“Donors without any history of stay for least 6 consecutive months (in their lifetime) in a malaria endemic area but have travelled and returned from a malaria endemic area twelve (12) months or more from the day of screening will be accepted for normal donation.

“Donors who previously lived or stayed for at least 6 consecutive months (in their lifetime) in a malaria endemic area and returned from a malaria endemic area less than four (4) months from the day of screening will be deferred and asked to come back at least 4 months after their return.”

If successful next week, this will be my 110th blood donation. I try to donate every three months, unless delayed by the flu which I was last struck by in late July. I had to wait to September before donating and I hope I will stay healthy to make my fourth blood donation for the year next Friday.

With the festive season coming, blood stocks usually take a dive. And right now, the Blood Bank is low on Group O blood stocks. Time to chip in, if you can, everyone.

13 Dec 2013 - Singapore Blood Stocks Indicator — Donorweb
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