Call to save lives by donating blood

A person giving blood. Photo credit: Haydn West/PA Wire
A person giving blood. Photo credit: Haydn West/PA Wire

Residents are being encouraged to start saving lives by becoming blood donors during National Blood Week,

Over the last year, 900,000 people donated, including 32,351 people in Greater Manchester.

There is an ongoing need for more young donors to safeguard blood donation for future generations

Mike Stredder

But NHS Blood And Transplant says 200,000 new donors are needed each year to ensure patients have access to the blood they need.

There is a particular need for more young people to give, as half of all donors are over 45.

There is also a need for more black donors, as they only account for one per cent of current donors. Around 10,000 black people gave blood last year, but around 40,000 new black donors are needed.

Mike Stredder, director of blood donation at NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “Thanks to the generosity of our loyal network of regular donors, we can ensure that hospitals have the blood needed to treat patients and, as recent weeks have sadly proven, make certain our stocks are strong enough to respond to major incidents and emergencies.

“At the same time, there is an ongoing need for more young donors to safeguard blood donation for future generations. And it is vital our blood donors reflect the diversity of the population because blood types vary across communities. Those who rely on regular transfusions need blood which is more closely matched than by group alone and this will often come from donors of the same ethnicity.”

National Blood Week started on Monday.

To sign up or book an appointment, visit www.blood.co.uk or call 0300 123 23 23.

People are encouraged to show their support by sharing #ImThere on social media.