Himanshu Dilip Mulay1, Prakash M. Patil2

BACKGROUND Blood is the living force of our body and there is no substitute for it. It can only be replaced through blood donation. Blood donation can save millions of lives. Demand for safe blood is increasing every day because of increase in population, increased life-expectancy and urbanisation, trauma cases, major surgeries, patients with regular transfusion requirement like cases of thalassaemia, haemophilia and chemotherapy. To increase blood donor recruitment and retention, the level of knowledge and attitude of blood donors towards blood donation must be known as this affects donor’s decision of blood donation. This information helps for tailoring targeted programs and campaigns in order to recruit more people as regular voluntary blood donors. OBJECTIVE To assess the level of knowledge and attitude regarding blood donation amongst blood donors in Bijapur district, Karnataka. MATERIALS AND METHODS Blood donors registered for blood donation in B.L.D.E. University’s Shri B. M. Patil Medical College, Hospital and Research Centre’s Blood Bank, in Bijapur district were included in this study. The data was collected by filling a self-administered structured questionnaire. The questionnaire was administered to all the donors ready to participate in the study. Questionnaires were distributed at the time of registration and were collected after filling during the refreshment period. Also one-on-one individual interviews were conducted to know about the blood donation experience and willingness of donor for future donation. A scoring mechanism was used to understand the level of knowledge, a score of one was given for each correct response and zero for wrong and unaware response. RESULTS In this study, it was found that 61% of the participants had average knowledge [Cumulative score 4-6], 34% of the participants had good knowledge [Cumulative score 7-8] and 5% of participants had poor knowledge [Cumulative score 0-3] about the different aspects of blood donation, assessed using the questionnaire. Participants from urban background had more knowledge score than the participants from the rural area. Males had higher knowledge score than the females. CONCLUSION Interactive talk with blood donors helped to clear their concepts and misbeliefs about blood donation which encourage them for repeat donation. Informative campaigns on blood donation should be initiated in the rural areas to increase awareness about blood donation and the idea of voluntary blood donation needs to be intensively promoted.