KZN Premier and Health MEC encourages blood donations and safe sex during Festive Season

30 November 2019 | Road Safety Highlights

With the start of the festive December month tomorrow, KwaZulu-Natal Premier Mr Sihle Zikalala has called upon citizens of the Province and visitors alike to seriously consider donating blood in order to help save the lives of those who may need a blood transfusion.  

Earlier today, the Premier and KZN Health MEC Ms Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu both donated blood at a South African National Blood Service depot, situated at Umlazi Megacity.   

People in urgent need of regular blood supply may include mothers giving birth, cancer patients, people involved in road crashes (especially during the festive season), and patients who suffer complications during major surgery.

Although all blood types are needed, blood group-O is in highest demand as it is universal and can be transferable to all patients in need.

Every person between the ages of 16 and 65; who is in good health and whose blood is considered safe is eligible to donate.

“As we enter the festive season, we experience more accidents. As a result, our institutions that keep blood often run short of supplies. That is why we encourage all people of KwaZulu-Natal... as we host many people during this season... to ensure they go and donate blood. In all areas, there are facilities and clinics where we can donate blood. A blood donation from one person could save three lives. It is very important that we contribute to saving the lives of others. It might be a person you know, it might be a person you don’t know, but to donate blood is to save the life of another person,” said Mr Zikalala.  
The Premier also urged motorists to drive safely and to adhere to rules of the road at all times.

“We say to all motorists KZN, 'let us drive carefully.' Let us utilize roads responsibly, and turn them into safe places. Ensure that you protect yourself and those who are driving alongside you. 
Let’s not drive long distances without getting time to rest. A person must drive for two hours and then rest. Let’s not drive under the influence of alcohol or any substance. Let’s also be responsible for saving the lives of others. Even when we go and entertain ourselves, let’s be responsible. Let’s not litter, let’s protect the environment.”

With the Province commemorating World Aids Day tomorrow, Health MEC Ms Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu urged the people of KZN to get tested for HIV/Aids; adhere to treatment if they test positive; and use male and female condoms – which are available free of charge - to avoid contracting sexually-transmitted infections, and unwanted and unplanned pregnancy.

“As the Department of Health, we’re calling on the people to ensure that when they celebrate and be jovial, they do so responsibly. As we commemorate World AIDS Day, the Premier will be at Umkhanyakude, and every district will be represented by an MEC. We are calling upon people to be aware that HIV/AIDS does not have to kill. We are urging our fellow compatriots to go and test so that they know their status. As we start the festive season, we’re saying celebrate responsibly. We must use condoms. There are male and female condoms that are available free of charge. Let us make sure that we use those during this time of celebrating the end of the year, and avoid the September baby boom, from unplanned pregnancies that tend to originate in December.”

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