On the occasion of the second edition of Rare Blood Awareness Week, which takes place from November 14 to 20, the French Blood Establishment (EFS) is putting this public health issue back in the spotlight.
The goal? Raise awareness about blood donation, and more particularly people likely to have blood that is highly sought after for transfusion.
While most of us are familiar with blood groups A, B, O and Rhesus + and -, their diversity is actually much greater and creates real challenges. Indeed, rare bloods are blood groups whose frequency in the population is low and this creates an imbalance between the number of donors and the needs of patients.
It is therefore a question of finding blood donors compatible with the patients in order to offer them the most suitable transfusion.
Anyone can be a carrier of rare blood, and in metropolitan France, it is people from the African continent, the West Indies and the Indian Ocean or with African ancestry, who are more likely to be carriers. of a rare blood group.
During the first edition of Rare Blood Awareness Week, in 2021, the EFS had reached several million people, which had enabled it to increase samples from people carrying rare blood. The EFS hopes to bring in and discover new rare blood donors on the occasion of this second edition.
Rare bloods in 3 key figures
- A blood group is considered rare when it affects less than 4 people in 1,000
- 700,000 people have a rare blood group in France*
- 200 rare blood groups listed in France*
*data from the National Reference Center for Blood Groups. EFS Ile-de-France.