Vice President Nguyen Thi Doan launched the 2013 Red Spring festival, an annual event to promote blood donation and an opportunity for people to give blood to patients in need at My Dinh National Stadium in Hanoi on March 3.

Addressing the event, Deputy Health Minister Nguyen Thi Xuyen highlighted the significance of the initiative jointly launched by the National Institute of Haematology and Blood Transfusion, the Hanoi Steering Committee of Voluntary Blood Donation and the Hanoi Youth Blood Donation Mobilisation Association.

Since its launch in 2008, the festival has received a warm response from society, the minister said, praising individuals who donate blood to help save lives.

This year’s festival is expected to attract 20,000 people and collect around 7,000 units of blood, which will alleviate the current blood shortage in more than 120 northern hospitals.

Nguyen Anh Tri, Director of the National Institute of Haematology and Blood Transfusion said that blood donation took place after Tet thorough 50 provinces and cities and will be expanded to other localities.

The annual festival has collected over 27,000 units of blood since 2008. -VNA