In a recent inspection, the Telangana drugs control administration has unearthed large scale irregularities by the blood banks in the state. Out of a total of 132 blood banks, TSDCA authorities have booked cases against 109 blood banks.
“In our inspection drive against the blood banks in Hyderabad and surrounding districts, we have found more than 100 blood banks violating the most common blood safety norms. It has come to our notice that some of the blood banks are running under unhygienic conditions with no proper maintenance and safety standards,” informed Akun Sabharwal, Telangana DCA director.
According to DCA authorities, the inspecting team had conducted a two-day drive to check the blood banks and their functioning in the state. During their drive, the inspectors have found that majority of the blood banks were violating the most common and simple safety measures stipulated to store the blood. In some cases, the cooling systems or refrigerators to store blood sachets are non functional.
Among other violations, the DCA inspectors also found that most of the blood banks have employed unskilled and inadequate number of doctors and technical manpower. The blood banks were also found at fault for improper logging and incorrect maintenance of records of donations and sale.
At present, there 132 registered blood banks and 35 blood storage center in Telangana. “We conduct regular inspections of blood banks, pharmacies and pharma and drug manufacturing firms to contain the malpractices and uphold safety standards. The recent inspection against the blood banks is to bring out the shortcomings and lacunae in the functioning of blood banks and to ensure that corrective measures are put in place,” Sabharwal said.
In many cases the blood banks were found selling blood by charging excess amount to the patients. Majority of blood banks were not upholding proper storage conditions. The storage areas were found inadequate and poorly maintained with unhygienic conditions. These banks were also found to be indulging in non-maintenance of the prescribed temperature of storage and absence of sterility testing.
In view of various discrepancies among blood banks, the DCA is preparing to issue notices to all those violators and even has plans to suspend the licenses if they don’t mend their ways.