The International Seminar on “Rare Blood Donors”, organized by Iranian Blood Transfusion Organization (IBTO) and supported by International Society of Blood Transfusion (ISBT), was held in Tehran on 17, September.
More than 300 participants from 10 different nationalities participated in the seminar.
The seminar reviewed the latest developments and important challenges in national rare blood donor programs world-wide. The morning session mainly consisted of presentations with the speakers representing the various fields of rare blood donors and afternoon session was conducted more interactively with panel discussion and case reports.
This is the second international seminar of its type in the world. Iran, a member of ISBT Working Party on Rare Blood Donors, is currently the only country from Eastern Mediterranean Region, which joined the working party in 2010.
“The rate of blood donation per 1000 population in Iran is 27; the highest rate among Eastern Mediterranean Region (EMR) and almost 2.5 fold more than median rate of middle-income countries which is 12.6. Iran is the first country in EMR which reached 100% Voluntary Non-remunerated Blood Donation in 2007. In 2012, 75% of blood units collected from regular & repeated donors and only 25% from first-time donors.” said Dr. Pourfathollah, IBTO Managing Director in his welcoming remarks.
“To meet the requests of patients with rare blood groups, IBTO regularly screens rare blood types from blood donor samples. Today more than 20000 blood samples have been phenotyped serologically using manual and modern automated devices by Gel column and Magnetic technology and planning for complementary molecular testing and mass genotyping in the future.” He added.
The seminar was ended with some recommendations by which EMR member countries were encouraged to establish their national rare donor programs with the assistance of EMRO and ISBT Working Party on Rare Donors.
Iranian National Rare Donor Program was appointed as the focal point to liaise between countries and international organizations.