Fighting infectious disease, one blood donation at a time
On World Blood Donor Day 2017, Roche is continuing its fight against infectious disease by raising awareness of the importance of blood safety.
Infectious diseases represent a major cause of death worldwide. Every year, 1.45 million people die of viral hepatitis1 and in 2014, 1.2 million died of AIDS-related causes.2 Following the 2014 Ebola outbreak, Zika became the latest virus to raise significant public health concern.Enabling rapid response in times of crisis
Blood-borne and thus capable of being transmitted via blood transfusion, it was suspected that the Zika virus had infected an estimated 80,000 people in Puerto Rico by February 2016.3 A public health emergency was declared and local blood collection was suspended.
Since April 2016, more than 2.9 million blood donations have been screened for Zika virus, and over 400 of those donations have tested positive and been removed from the blood supply.4Delivering vital information to healthcare professionals
With 108 million blood donations collected globally every year,5 the safety of the blood supply is paramount. Proper screening dramatically reduces the risk of exposing patients to transfusion-transmissible infections.
Roche’s commitment to developing fast, accurate and high-volume testing technologies helps ensure safe blood donations, even in the context of infectious disease outbreaks, and contributes to saving lives worldwide.