SINGAPORE: Two more satellite blood donation centres will be set up by 2018, bringing the total number of blood donation centres to five.
The new centres will be located at areas with high population density.
Health Minister Gan Kim Yong made the announcement at the 11th World Blood Donor Day event held at Sentosa on Saturday morning.
At the event, 1,610 individuals and 32 corporate and community bloodmobile organisers were honoured for supporting the National Blood Programme.
Mr Gan said the Health Sciences Authority is looking into the feasibility of several sites and will announce more information in due course.
He added that past surveys and interactions with blood donors show that many of them greatly value convenience and accessibility.
By bringing the satellite centres nearer to the community, Mr Gan hopes that more potential donors will come forward.
This is important as blood demand will continue to rise in Singapore, with usage projected to rise between three and five per cent annually over the next two decades.
To meet the increased demand, Mr Gan said the donor pool has to grow rapidly and donation capacity will have to be expanded by almost two-fold by 2030.
In a joint statement, the Singapore Red Cross and the Health Sciences Authority said they aim to collect 129,700 units of blood and increase the total donor population by four per cent this year.
This translates to an average of 400 units of blood collected daily.
The Singapore Red Cross will continue to engage and encourage more youths to become regular blood donors this year.
It aims to bring the percentage of youth blood donors to 35 per cent of the total blood donor population, up from 31 per cent in 2013.
Sadali Rasban, a regular blood donor and recipient of the Medal for Life, said: "It's a set of beliefs that I have, that is to give back to society. It's the duty of every individual to share their wealth -- and health is wealth.
"So by giving a small part of your health to others, it gives a lot of smiles to everybody around you, your family, the people who receive it and the doctors because they have enough blood supply to save the patient." - CNA/nd
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