In a bid to easily identify potential blood donors in times of disease outbreak, a free blood-typing programme dubbed 'Type ng Bayan' will soon be launched to be jointly undertaken by the Departments of Health and Interior and Local Government along with the DU30 Cabinet Spouses Association.

The blood type database should facilitate easy identification of possible donors within a given area in crucial times when transfusion is necessary.

Extensive campaigns will be launched nationwide. Initially, local government units will be provided with 100 units of blood typing kits. These can serve 150 to 180 people, according to a DILG press release.

Jocelyn Sueno, wife of DILG Secretary Ismael Sueno and president of the association, said they pushed for the project to raise awareness among Filipinos of their blood type. "This information will enable us to identify who are our co-blood types in our own communities, closest to our own homes."

The LGUs will then turnover their report to the Office of the President.

Secretary Sueno said the target for this year is to have 400 to 500 members from each village (barangay) with their blood types identified and stored in the database.

Under the ‘Type ng Bayan’ programme, identification cards will be issued to those who underwent blood typing. The card contains vital information, as well as information on five other people who have the same blood type closest to their homes.

The Philippine Association of Medical Technologists (PAMET) will provide a registered medical technologist in every LGU blood typing event.

DOH Secretary Paulyn Ubial hopes the blood typing programme will help with the shortage of blood supplies from the Philippine National Red Cross (PNRC).

According to DOH, the most common blood type is Blood Group O followed by A, then B and AB. Also, 99 percent of Filipinos are Rh positive while less than 1 percent has Rh negative blood.

The national goal is to acquire 950,000 blood packs a year. MIMS

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