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Latvia marks 80 years of blood donation services

On March 18, 1941, surgeon and professor Pauls Stradiņš founded the Republic Blood Transfusion Station. This event was the basis for development of Latvian blood donation services until today, Latvian Television reported Thursday.

The director of the State Blood Donor Center (VADC) Egita Pole said that the blood service of Latvia was established in an alarming time, beginning of World War II.

“It was for a reason that one of our fathers of medicine, Professor Pauls Stradiņš, decided on that service at that moment and led it through all the years of war,” Pole said.

She said that the Transfusion Station's achievements could not be denied: the station was one of the leading in the USSR, both in terms of various innovations, achievements and number of donors.

Images: VADC

“But times go on and we have very many and different challenges right now so that we keep this level and progress in the direction it is in Europe (…),” Pole said.

According to her, without donors, the center would not be able to work, and their numbers are increasing. 53% of the donations are made by women. The center is slightly concerned that the average donor age is increasing: over the last 10 years, this age has increased by nine years and is currently 38 years.

“Like all of Europe, we are aging, we need to work more on attracting young people,” Pole added.

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