Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Blood Centre has urged donors to come forward to donate blood to replenish dwindling supplies.

In a series of recent Facebook posts, the centre also assured that there is no risk of the corona virus transmission in the process of donating, or receiving blood, and noted ways for donors to still make it despite the widespread roadblocks during the Movement Control Order (MCO) enforcement.

"The spread of COVID-19 has disrupted the blood supply chain. This surely will affect patients who are in need of blood, every day.

"Come on Malaysians. Let's break the chain of COVID-19 infection, but not break the chain of care towards others," read one post.

"Continue donating blood, you can make a change!"

Blood donations can be made at various locations, namely the National Blood Centre in Jalan Tun Razak, the Mid Valley Donation Suite, the Blood Donation Suite at Puspanitapuri in Presint 10, Putrajaya, as well as blood donation banks at every state.

The centre also included a phamplet of do's and don'ts for potential donors to observe amid the health crisis.

For instance, those confirmed to have been infected with COVID-19 are not allowed to donate blood for 28 days after they have recovered. Similarly, those who are asymptomatic, but has had close contact with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients, are also not allowed to donate blood for 28 days.

Similar restriction was also imposed on those who travelled to China, South Korea, Japan, Italy, and Iran, but had not displayed any symptoms after arriving here.

The centre also assured the safety of donors, saying its workers are also required to don personal protective equipments (PPEs), and that the donation bed, and the surrounding equipments are regularly sanitized. Social distancing will also be strictly observed at all of its donation centres, it added.

As to travel restrictions imposed during the MCO, which was yesterday extended until April 14, the centre urged donors to carry the "red book" or blood donation card, or a print out of the online blood donation form, as well as an appointment slip to donate blood.

In Malaysia, more than 1,700 cases of COVID-19 cases have been recorded, and 20 people have died from the disease.

Photo source: Astro Awani