Is human blood 'costly'?

Human Blood is not costly. It is also not rare. Everybody has blood and everybody can donate it. But unfortunately it doesn't happen often. In countries like India the Blood Banks are run mainly by voluntary firms such as Red Cross, Rotary etc.  To successfully run a blood and to follow all protocols there need to be quality equipment and support staff. The Blood when donated should be screened for infections and should also be stored in freezing temperature, which also costs money. Private Blood Banks ask for a replacement when someone need a packet of Blood. Example, if I need urgently B+ve blood I need to find some one to replace a packet (of any group) . This literally means I am replenishing a packet of blood that I have taken. In this case the blood banks only charge nominal fee of around Rs.1000 to 1500 for each packet.  Sometimes, if there is nobody to donate a replacement unit, the Blood Bank may "sell" the packet. This may vary anywhere from Rs.2000 to 5000 depending on the rarity of the group. Again this is not for money making but only to discourage taking blood without replenishing them. There are also a number of Government run blood banks which issue blood packets free of charge to patients who are BPL and charge a nominal fee of around Rs.250 for others. It is a true fact that blood is becoming a scarcity (although it is abundant). I have seen numerous cases where surgeries had to be postponed or we all would be waiting helplessly to transfuse a unit of blood to that accident victim. If only everybody had awareness about blood donation and made it a habit to donate blood, we would not have such a situation. (Originally written on Quora.com as an answer by me)

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