The Federal Government of Nigeria has established the National Blood Service Commission (NBSC) to replace the National Blood Transfusion Service, NBTS which was formerly a unit under the Department of Hospital Services in the Federal Ministry of Health. This followed the assent by President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR of the Bill for the Establishment of a National Blood Service Commission passed by the National Assembly.

The Federal government announced this in her Official Gazette titled Act No 8, National Blood Service Commission Act, 2021, Page A375-390 which was made available to the press by the Head of Media and Publicity of the Commission Abdullahi Haruna.

Dr Omale Joseph Amedu mni heads the Commission which has the statutory mandate to coordinate, regulate and ensure the provision of safe, quality blood transfusion services on a country- wide basis within the national health plan. Therefore, the  Commission is legally mandated to ensure proper compliance with the National Blood Service Guidelines and standards, maintain a system of quality assurance at all levels of service, encourage research in all aspects of blood transfusion services and promote the rational use of blood, blood products and alternatives to blood where appropriate.

The Commission which takes effect immediately as National Blood Service Commission (NBSC) has communicated that its new name and status more aptly reflects the mandate of ensuring the availability of safe, quality and adequate blood services to all Nigerians.

In his new role, Dr Amedu will transmute from National Coordinator to the status of Acting Director-General of the National Blood Service Commission in line with the provisions of the Act establishing the Commission.

As National Coordinator under the defunct National Blood Transfusion Service, Dr Amedu mni engineered many reforms in the service specifically the One Million Safe Blood Units Initiative (OMSBUI), the National Strategic Safe Blood Reserve (NSSBR), the establishment of the first Blood Component Production and Automated Blood Screening within the National Blood Service in the country, developed a costed 10 years Strategic Plan 2020 to 2030 to transform the Nigerian blood Service into a sustainable service, having through Public-Private Partnership hub for Blood Component Separation and the manufacturing of Plasma Derived Medicinal Products as well as pursuing the Bill for the establishment of the National Blood Service Commission to its successful passage amongst other notable achievements.

Also, in his attempt to reform the Blood Service In Nigeria, Dr Amedu had gone ahead to procure and conclude robust collaborative Memorandum of Understandings with key strategic partners like the National Orientation Agency, National Universities Commission, National Youth Service Corp, Federal Road Safety Corps, National Health Insurance Scheme, the Nigerian Medical Association and the media.

The establishment of a National Blood Service Commission (NBSC) by the President Muhammadu Buhari administration is a firm step towards improved health outcomes for the Nigerian people.

Abdullahi Haruna
Head, Media and Publicity, NBSC
24th September, 2021