HENAN PROVINCE, China -- Taking a major step forward in the fight against HIV/AIDS in China, Vice Minister Huang Jiefu opened today the country's first joint venture blood safety training center in Henan Province funded and operated by the Washington, D.C.-based Safe Blood International Foundation. He was joined in the launch ceremony by Jeffrey Busch, chairman and CEO of Safe Blood International Foundation, and other officials at the center located in the city of Zhengzhou, Henan Province. The Henan location is the hardest hit Province with HIV/AIDS, due to a history of poor blood-safety practices.
Safe Blood for China Foundation was formed to help prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS by developing a variety of blood safety programs throughout China. The Henan Blood Safety Training Center is the first of many such centers and programs to be initiated by Safe Blood for China Foundation. The center's activities include hosting and conducting training sessions to help reduce the risk of spreading HIV/AIDS through transfusion of unsafe/untested blood. Safe Blood for China will train blood center staff from all blood centers in Henan including senior management, scientists, nurses and clerks in blood testing, donor screening, recruitment and retention of non-remunerated blood donors, phlebotomy, quality assurance, appropriate blood utilization and transfusion service compatibility testing.
"In Henan Province, 90.26 percent of total HIV/AIDS cases resulted from HIV-contaminated blood," said Huang during the opening ceremonies. "We hope Safe Blood for China Foundation will expand to other parts of China, and become a role model for blood safety nationwide."
Busch expressed his gratitude to Huang for his commitment and leadership. "Our goal is simple -- to prevent HIV/AIDS infections and save lives. With the help of Vice Minister Huang, and the Chinese Ministry of Health, today our campaign to increase blood safety throughout China takes a very important first step." Busch added, "The National Blood Safety Training Center in Henan Province, and others that will join as part of the national network, will help save millions of lives. Safe Blood for China and the Chinese Ministry of Health plan to use the Henan Center as a model to open similar training centers throughout China."
Source: Safe Blood International Foundation