The establishment “continues to experience the effects of the crisis, the consequences of the pandemic”, underlined its president François Toujas on Tuesday, during a press conference organized for World Blood Donor Day.
Cancellations of collections in companies and universities, lower mobilization of donors, difficulties in recruiting medical personnel…: the health crisis has considerably affected blood collection.
“No patient missed a blood bag over the period, but it was sometimes very tense”, recalled Hervé Meinard, director of collection, with stock periods “at their lowest”, as in February.
As summer approaches, the EFS would like to “increase blood bags by 30,000”, to approach 110,000 bags in stock, in order to approach the summer period “in less difficult conditions”, even if collections will be organized on French vacation spots.
The EFS has also announced that it is preparing a “plasma plan” in order to increase its supply capacities to the French biotechnology laboratory (LFB), which manufactures drugs derived from blood or plasma.
Plasma is the liquid part of blood in which blood cells (red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets) circulate. It contains proteins of major therapeutic interest for patients.
People in intensive care or with immune deficiency, severe burns, hemophiliacs… very many patients are treated each year thanks to drugs produced from proteins extracted from plasma or directly by transfusions.
The EFS has set itself an “ambitious” objective: to increase withdrawals by 500,000 liters over five years.
“We want to take better care of patients, defend our ethical model and improve our health sovereignty”, explained Cathy Bliem, general manager of the transfusion chain, therapies and development.
“This will require significant investment and strong state support,” she added.