Knowledge and behavior towards voluntary blood donation among students of a tertiary institution in Nigeria
AbstractBackground: Blood donation is the only way of acquiring blood to meet emergency requirements in cases of road traffic accidents, complications of pregnancy and childbirth, various anemic disorders and surgical emergencies among others. Globally, 80 million units of blood are donated each year, but only two million units are donated in sub-Saharan Africa where the need is enormous. The objective of this study was to determine the behavior of the students of a tertiary institution in Nigeria towards voluntary blood donation.
Materials and Methods: This is a descriptive cross-sectional study, which involved students of a tertiary institution in Nigeria. A multistage sampling technique was employed in selecting the participants for this study. A semi-structured self-administered questionnaire was used to collect information on socio-demographic characteristics, knowledge, attitude and factors affecting voluntary blood donation. The data obtained were analyzed using EPI-INFO 2005 software Version 3.3.2.
Results: Less than two-thirds (61%) of total respondents had good knowledge of blood donation. More than three quarters (85%) of the respondents had never donated blood. Of the 15% that had donated, only 3% donated voluntarily. Among those that had ever donated, males (57%) were more than females. Many of the donors donated for relatives (57%). The majority of the respondents were compelled to donate because of emergency situations (75%). The reasons why many did not donate were lack of opportunity (45%) due to tight lecture schedule and inadequate knowledge (24%). Gift items such as hematinics, T-shirts and wrist bands (29%) would motivate respondents to donate.
Conclusion: The Students’ Union body and other Organizations in the University should include a blood donation drive in their monthly/annual activities. The University authorities, the University health service centre and the Hematology Department of the Teaching hospital should collaborate in promoting voluntary blood donation among the students.