Taipei-, The Taiwan Blood Services Foundation on Friday urged the public to roll up its sleeves and donate blood, as the foundation currently has only enough for 5.7 days of use, lower than the officially designated safe level of seven days.
The foundation observed that people are generally less willing to donate blood when the weather turns cold and during Chinese New Year. That fact, coupled with a recent controversy, has further dampened public willingness to donate.
The foundation said it hopes to increase levels to a minimum of 10-days of use before Chinese New Year, which falls on Jan. 28 this year.
The controversy erupted on Tuesday when Mirror Media published a report that the Executive Yuan's Ill-Gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee was about to launch an investigation into allegations that the foundation was established with funds from the opposition Kuomintang and should therefore be classified as an ill-gotten asset.
The report also accused the non-profit of monopolizing sources of blood for medical uses in Taiwan and making annual income of NT$3 billion (US$95 million).
YehChing-chuan (???), a former health minister, announced his resignation as chairman of the foundation on Thursday, saying the Cabinet pressured him to quit after the report triggered a precipitous fall in donations.
According to Yeh, blood donations plummeted in the two days after the report was published.
Yeh said that when he reported the situation to the Ministry of Health and Welfare, which has four seats on the foundation's board, he was informed "the Cabinet would like you to resign."
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel