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DSV’s deliveries help SANBS save lives

Ever wondered how donated blood reaches people and helps save lives?

The South African National Blood Service (SANBS) aims to collect a minimum of 3 500 units of blood a day – which can save up to 9 000 lives – to meet the never-ending demand for blood in the healthcare system. 

A processed unit of whole blood lasts just 42 days, and DSV will move 160 000 parcels in 59 400 shipments of blood, blood specimens, plasma, platelets, stem cells and consumables for SANBS this year.

The life-saving service is built around a reliable supply chain solution linking SANBS to people who need them most. DSV has put in place a dedicated network to ensure the uninterrupted daily collection and delivery of the four key components – plasma, red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets.

DSV’s shipments take place in four zones, Egoli, Northern, Vaal and Mpumalanga.

DSV’s involvement with SANBS began in January 2022 when Globeflight Worldwide Express’s business was integrated into DSV Road. At the time, DSV’s mandate was to provide national blood courier services at blood banks and donor centres for the Egoli and Northern zones only.

In October 2022, DSV tendered for and won two additional zones (Vaal and Mpumalanga), national stores distribution, some blood bank services.

These services require national blood and blood bank courier services to blood banks, donor centres, private hospitals and clinics, as well as national plasma collection and distribution. 

The two main SANBS processing and distribution centres are in Roodepoort (Egoli) and Mount Edgecombe (KZN), although shipments are booked for collections and deliveries to 321 destinations across South Africa. 

Collections are done on a daily milk run or scheduled stop, but ad hoc collections and deliveries occur daily. This is particularly true when a “Red Label” emergency call comes through to a DSV Driver, who then has a specified timeframe in which to get the blood to the hospital or clinic where it is needed.

All blood specimens, blood bags, plasma, platelets and stem cells are transported through a temperature-controlled value chain, ensuring the laboratories are able to process the blood specimens effectively before the finished product is delivered to the end destination.

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