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Blood Needed PDF Print Email

There has been a big drop in the number of people who are giving blood.  In the last 10 years the number of volunteers has dropped by 40%.  NHS Blood and Transplant has launched a campaign to increase awareness and recruit more volunteers.  They state 120,000 fewer people have joined the register in 2014 - 15 than 2004 - 5.  They are trying to recruit another 200,000 volunteers.

 

One of the main causes for the decline is thought to be the reduction in people’s free time, in part due to busier lives, working longer hours, longer commutes, social media distractions and the fact that the blood donation centres aren’t always open at times to fit in with busy lives too.  You also need to make an appointment now which may put people off doing it spontaneously.

 

"We simply can't ignore the fact that there has been a stark reduction in the number of new donors coming forward - a trend seen across the world," said Jon Latham, assistant director for donor services and marketing at NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT), which provides blood supplies for England and north Wales.

If is often people who have never previously been donors but are affected in some way either directly or by someone they know who then become donors and encourage family and friends to give blood too.

 

Only about 4% of the population are regular donors.  There appears to be enough stock for this year but supplies for the future need to be ensured so the situation doesn’t become severe.

 

About 50% of donors are over 45 years of age and younger people are particularly sought to help safeguard supplies in the future.

Black, Asian and minority ethnic people are also particularly important as donors.  Conditions such as sickle cell disease and thalassaemia are more prevalent among these group and those affected need regular blood transfusions, ideally from donors with similar ethnic backgrounds.

NHS Blood and Transplant are particularly keen for anyone with O-negative blood to donate as this type of blood can be given to anyone, regardless of their own blood group.

 

You can donate if you are a healthy 17 – 65 year old person.  Man can donate four times a year and women three.

 

To find out where or for more information click here