World Thalassaemia Day is observed on May 8 in order to create and raise awareness about a blood disorder called Thalassaemia. It also honours patients suffering from the disease and their families and loved ones who have not given up in the fight against this genetic blood disorder.
The World Thalassaemia Day 2020 theme is ‘’The dawning of a new era for thalassaemia: Time for a global effort to make novel therapies accessible and affordable to patients”.
Thalassaemia is a genetic blood disorder that affects the production of haemoglobin. A person who has this disorder will have lesser red blood cells and low haemoglobin.
Haemoglobin is made of two proteins namely alpha and beta. If a person lacks alpha protein he or she is diagnosed with Alpha Thalassemia and if beta protein is lacking then the person is diagnosed with Beta Thalassemia. A person suffering from severe Thalassemia will need regular blood transfusions in order to survive.
Some commonly seen symptoms of this disease are weakness, dark urine, fatigue, poor appetite, pale skin, slow growth, abdominal swelling etc.
The theme of World Thalassaemia Day last year was “Universal access to quality thalassaemia healthcare services: Building bridges with and for patients”.