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 Blood donation and donor   behaviour beyond the West:   A case study of Lebanon 

Blood transfusion is a fundamental healthcare service that uniquely contributes to the health and survival of people, and is considered as one of four strategies to achieve Goal 3 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), known as: “Good health and well-being: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages.” The World Health Organization (WHO) specifically recommends the voluntary and non-remunerated blood donations (VNRD) framework as the safest way to ensure a sustainable supply of healthy blood units. According to WHO (2016), only 4.1% of all blood donations in Lebanon, which is a signatory to the SDGs, comply with the WHO standard of VNRD. The remaining 95.9% of blood donations in Lebanon are sourced from family/replacement and paid donations.


Designed as a comparative case study, this project aims to examine how different actors, healthcare institutions, and policies impact progression towards VNRD in Lebanon by comparing policy formation and appropriation across the macro-level (i.e., national level), the meso-level (i.e., institutional/organizational level), and the micro-level (i.e., perceptions and experiences at the level of the person/individual). My study seeks to answer the following research questions: What factors (actors, institutions, policies, and crises) hinder Lebanon’s progression towards voluntary and non-remunerated blood donations? What factors facilitate Lebanon’s progression towards voluntary and non-remunerated blood donations?


Samira Chatila is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Sociology at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. With a focus on medical sociology, her dissertation study aims to understand blood donation and blood donor behavior in Lebanon. She can be reached at

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