Health chiefs in blood donor plea

SHOCK new figures have revealed that seasonal blood stocks are so depleted that supplies of common blood types are only enough to last hospitals across the region for four days.

SHOCK new figures have revealed that seasonal blood stocks are so depleted that supplies of common blood types are only enough to last hospitals across the region for four days.

The worryingly low blood stores have prompted health chiefs to issue a lifesaving New Year plea for people to come forward to give blood.

Stocks held by the National Blood Service (NBS) fell by almost a half between September and December - a seasonal drop attributed to the distractions of Christmas planning or winter illnesses.

Blood bank reserves were given a timely boost by hardy donors before Christmas, but yesterday the stocks of O positive and O negative blood groups were both estimated at about four days.

NHS Blood and Transplant chief executive Lynda Hamlyn also made a plea for more people to sign up as organ donors, with 1,000 of the 8,000 people registered for a transplant expected to die before they receive it.

She said: “To those who have always thought about becoming a regular blood donor or signing up to the organ donor register, but have never got around to it, please make this your New Year's resolution and act now.”

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For details of local blood donor sessions, call the National Blood Service on 08457 711711.