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Jul 5, 2019

Bowen & Bowen Hosts a Blood Drive!

We’ve reported before about the shortage of blood at the Blood Bank where earlier this year the shortage has put elective surgeries on hold. Now, there has always been a challenge in getting voluntary blood donors and so often times the bank’s supply dips when there is a surge in violent incidents. And so to make sure that there is available blood for injured or sick patients, the blood bank carries out a number of blood drives. Today, they got a boost from corporate partner, Bowen and Bowen, whose employees rolled up their sleeves to give blood. Andrea Polanco has more in the following story.


Andrea Polanco, Reporting

You may or may not know this yet but you hold the power to save lives. When you donate blood in Belize, it is used directly for persons who are sick or who have been injured. And there is a dwindling supply of blood at the Belize Blood Bank because the wave of gun violence and high incidence of road traffic accidents puts the supply under pressure.


Doreen Madrill

Doreen Madrill, Phlebotomist, Belize Blood Bank

“The Blood Bank is always in need of blood because whenever we have any gun-shot, stab wounds, all those people receive a lot of blood. Especially if the patient dies, nobody comes to replace the blood, so the blood bank is at loss all the time.”


Because the demand is more than the supply, the Blood Bank and its partners carry out year round blood drives. The challenge with this is that the donations are voluntary and unpaid and so the system is dependent on the individual to willingly give blood. There are two types of blood donors. Voluntary donors give blood without an assigned patient, while replacement donors make a deposit for someone who is in need of the blood. And one company that knows the value of blood donation is Bowen and Bowen. A few weeks back two of its employees came under gun fire – one of those employees survived but he needed blood to recuperate. So, today Bowen and Bowen transformed one of its offices into a blood drive center and offered a small reward to their employees who donated blood.  Bowen partnered with the Belize Blood Bank to try and collect at least fifty units of blood.



John Palacio

John Palacio, Public Relations, Bowen & Bowen

“We found it very important for us to start save lives. We saw the story that ran January twenty-ninth on Channel Five and the Belize Blood Bank had actually approached the various ministries to do a blood drive for replenishment. We found it very important that with over twelve hundred employees that we are able to save lives as well. We, a few weeks ago, had an unfortunate situation right here at CBCO whereby two of our security guards were shot; one of them fatally and the other Mr. Manza Baptist who actually needed blood not too long ago. This is one of the reasons why we found it important to contribute to the Belize Blood Bank in helping them to replenish what they have got.  We encourage for Belizeans to come on out. You never know when you will need. If you come out to save lives then what you think would happen if when your family or you would need as well. Donate Blood; Save a life.”


Ideally, the Blood Bank would want one percent of the population to voluntarily donate blood about four times a year. If you are eighteen or older and are interested in giving blood, you will first answer a set of questions to determine that you are in good health to make a donation. After that screening process is over, the nurse will prick your finger to find out your blood type and if you have sufficient blood levels to be able to donate. Nurse Phlebotomist Doreen Madrill urges the public to give blood today to help save a life.


Doreen Madrill

“People need to come out and donate blood because we will need it one day for somebody and whenever you are donating blood, you are saving lives. Please come out and save a life.”


Reporting for News Five, I’m Andrea Polanco.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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