Ilorin residents make brisk business from selling blood, semen/eggs

 Human blood transfusion and ‘donations’ of semen and ovaries have become big business at many hospitals and IVF centres in Ilorin, the Kwara state capital.

Those involved are mostly students of higher institutions and some middle-aged men who cited lack of jobs. The development is such that many blood banks are daily besieged by commercial ‘donors’ especially those with blood group ‘O’ Negative, said to be scarce and thus attracts the highest cost, between N10, 000 to 14,000. The risk factor is that many of the donors are said to be unfit for donations due to the level of frequency with which they donate.

Consultant haematologist at University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (UITH) who pled anonymity said, “One must wait 56 days between whole blood donations, at least seven days after donating blood before you can donate platelets but after an automated double red cell collection, you must wait 112 days before donating again.

Some donors when declared unfit for donations at a blood bank centre would sneak to another centre to try their “luck”. The consultant warned that such people stand the risk of sudden death if they don’t stop.

Speaking, a donor said, “We know what what we’re doing but when it is the last available option for survival, we will continue to do it until somebody can alleviate our sufferings. In three months, we sometimes get close to N40, 000 from selling blood and semen.”

A private medical practitioner at Gaa Akanbi Area of Ilorin, under condition of anonymity said, many of patients at the slightest level of improvement, often remove drips, pretend as if they are taking a stroll around the hospital premises only for them to abscond without paying their bills. The Guardian checks showed that each donor at some IVF centres make between N50, 000 and N80, 000 depending on the power of negotiation of the donor.

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