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[Correspondence] Blood shortages and donation in China

China has a relatively low blood donation rate compared with the mean global rate, resulting in long-term blood shortages. Blood shortages are fairly common in regions in which the demand for blood for health-care services is high, such as Beijing, and are seasonal, such as during the winter and summer when college students and migrant workers (the main blood donors) are on holiday. To address the challenges of ensuring that sufficient blood is available, the Chinese Government has released a series of incentive policies, such as priority services, which give donors non-monetary compensation and prioritise them to receive blood during shortages, and mutual help donation, which encourages patients undergoing elective surgeries to persuade their family members, relatives, and friends to donate blood in blood centres in exchange for the same amount of blood for them to use during their surgery.

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