Advancing Hemovigilance, Uganda to Host 11th AfSH Conference in Kampala

Uganda is set to host the 11th African Society for Hemovigilance (AfSH) Conference in the bustling city of Kampala next month.

The conference, slated for March 1st – 4th, 2024, will convene prominent scholars and stakeholders in the realm of blood safety from across the continent, themed “Safe and Sustainable Blood Transfusion Services in Africa -Adopting Global Innovations & Technology Advancements in Blood Transfusion Services”

Dr. Dorothy Kyeyune Byabazaire, the Director-General of the Uganda Hemovigilance Agency (UHA), conveyed optimism about organizing the conference.

“We are excited to host the African Society for Hemovigilance Conference in Uganda. This presents a significant opportunity for our nation and the broader healthcare sector. It is a momentous occasion as Uganda hosts its maiden hemovigilance conference,” Dr. Byabazaire remarked.

The 11th AfSH conference in Kampala anticipates the participation of numerous international experts in hemovigilance, policymakers, and other key stakeholders pivotal in advancing the field of transfusion medicine and science.

The conference, in turn, furnishes a forum for experts from diverse countries to exchange insights, experiences, and optimal practices in hemovigilance. It also aims to chart pathways for sustaining blood safety services in Africa and exploring groundbreaking clinical methodologies, along with innovative technologies.

Moreover, the event provides an invaluable opportunity for networking among professionals in the sector.

Minister for Public Health, Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng, hailed the conference as a chance for Uganda to spotlight its proficiency in hemovigilance services.

“I am grateful for the global scientific community’s forthcoming participation. This forum will facilitate collaborative deliberations on optimal practices and lessons learned in ensuring blood availability for our populace,” Dr. Aceng articulated.

The Uganda Hemovigilance Agency (UHA) serves as the national authority for blood safety under the aegis of the Ministry of Public Health. It oversees all blood-related activities in the country, ensuring the accessibility, adequacy, judicious use, and transparency of safe blood and its components.

The agency is tasked with bolstering the blood supply to cater to patients in healthcare facilities and expanding the blood transfusion infrastructure nationwide. Additionally, it promotes the prudent clinical utilization of safe blood.

UHA’s endeavors significantly contribute to Uganda’s Vision 2040 and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 4, 5, and 6, by furnishing safe blood and curbing child mortality.

Per the World Health Organization criteria, a nation achieves self-sufficiency in safe blood if it procures blood equivalent to 1% of its population. Uganda, with a populace nearing 48 million and projected to exceed 55 million by 2025, faces a demand for safe blood estimated at approximately 457,000 units, anticipated to rise to 550,000 units by 2025. Considering the refugee population of about 1.6 million individuals, the demand for safe blood escalates to an estimated 473,000 units.