The status of stock, information on the availability of blood of specific groups in state-run blood banks will now be a click away as the West Bengal government is now all ready to roll out a web portal linking them together.
"The state government is determined to help people with information on blood banks in the state. That's why we've thought of linking them together through online and work has already been started," West Bengal Health Services Director Biswaranjan Satpathy told PTI. Hopefully the website would be ready very soon, Satpathy said.
State Blood Transfusion Council Joint Director (Blood Safety) Dr Arabinda Bala said that Webel had been given the responsibility to build the portal and it was expected to be launched by next January. The portal would provide complete detail of the stock of blood in the 58 state-run blood banks specifying its group. So a person requiring blood of a specific group would be able to know from which blood bank he could get it without visiting them.
There were cases in which a patient could not be saved because the specific group of blood he needed was not available in certain blood banks, though it was available in another, an official at the state Health department said. "This portal will help one to track the stock and get the blood in time," he said. It would also provide a donor's details, which would help officials to contact him in time of blood shortage. In fact, once the portal was ready organisers of blood camps would have to apply online for holding camps, he said.
Apart from assisting donors and patients, the portal would also help the state government monitor the blood banks' mode of operations. "Once the portal comes up, it would help us operate things in a more transparent manner," Dr Bala said. "There have been reports of refusal by blood banks and also cases of theft of blood units. But this portal would not only help us monitor the stock but also improve the services," Bala said.
The blood banks, linked online, would be connected with the state Health Ministry Department at its Salt Lake office and Webel would be entrusted with the task of running it in the first six months, after which ministry workers would take over charge.