The blood collection procedures for SM employees are handled by personnel from the Philippine Blood Disease and Transfusion Center. In 2013, SM Foundation was able to collect over 2,000 liters of blood.
SM employees participated in SM Foundation‘s quarterly bloodletting drive held at the SM Corporate Offices in Pasay City on August 27 and 28. Employees from SM Hypermarket and SM Investments Corporation volunteered and donated in the two-day mass blood donation activity.
Collected blood is stored in the SM Group’s Virtual Blood Bank. SM is the first company to have a Virtual Blood Bank where blood and blood products are made available to SM employees and their families, free of charge.
Donor Recruitment Officer Rosario Stephanie Ornum from the Department of Health‘s (DOH) Philippine Blood Center said that donating blood hold many health benefits for the donor.
“A healthy person can donate blood every three months which also helps the body boost production of red blood cells. Regular bloodletting also reduces the risk of heart attack, lower cholesterol levels and contribute in giving the skin a healthier glow,” Ornum said.
“But the best benefit is that you are helping other people and can even save lives. It really is a great feeling,” Connie Angeles, SM Foundation’s Executive Director for Medical Programs, reiterated.
According to Angeles, many SM employees have already benefitted from the Virtual Blood Bank. In one instance, a previous employee with acute myelogenous leukemia was provided with 21 bags of blood, free of charge, for his blood transfusions.
The bloodletting drive included seminars for SM employees on entrepreneurship, sharpening the saw exercises, and health and wellness tips for a better lifestyle.
The SM Group established the Virtual Blood Bank for its employees and their relatives in 2011. In 2013, SM Foundation received its second Jose Rizal Award from DOH for its Virtual Blood Bank and for conducting mobile blood-letting activities.
Last year, total of more than 2,000 liters of blood units were collected for this program.