Police have confirmed that the WhatsApp message being circulated that residents can leave their homes to donate O Negative blood to a patient at the Dr D Orlando Smith Hospital in Road Town is true.
The Information Unit of the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF) further confirmed that residents who are minded to donate blood will not require a pass.
Persons must, however, seek permission from the RVIPF before leaving their homes. The RVIPF further warned that donors must immediately return to their place of abode afterwards.
“It (the WhatsApp message) is legit, but it is not for persons to abuse it is just to leave their homes,” Police Information Officer Akia Thomas told BVI News.
The message — which seems to have been sent by relatives of the patient — read: “Cecil Nibbs is in urgent need of O Negative blood. If you can donate a pint of blood, please go to the laboratory in the old Peebles Hospital today.”
“To be on the safe side, please call the police headquarters before leaving home. My family and I thank you in advance,” the message said.
Requirements for donating blood
While also confirming that a patient is currently in need of O Negative blood, supervisor at the hospital’s blood bank, Marilyn Maduro, advised that donors must not have had any illnesses within the last month. She said they must not be taking any antibiotics either.
“If they have a temperature or they are not feeling well for the day, they shouldn’t attempt to. If there are any other underlying medical conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, they cannot give blood,” Maduro said.
“They should be weighing more than 110 pounds, but if they took any vaccines or tattoos within the last year, they can’t,” she added.
The British Virgin Islands is currently under a 24-hour curfew to limit the spread of the coronavirus. This curfew is expected to come to an end on April 19.
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