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Younger Blood Donors Needed In Dorset

Blood Donations

8:52am 10th June 2013

More than half of Dorset's active blood donors are over the age of 45.

NHS Blood and Transplant have revealed the figures to Wessex FM to encourage more young people to donate.

The drive comes as part of National Blood Week which starts today.  (10th June)

Things people often don't know about blood donation and how blood is used include:

- It's not just used in A&E - blood is used to treat a wide variety of illnesses, including many types of cancers such as leukaemia.

- Blood is collected to meet patient need - this need varies by blood group so sometimes just registering to be a donor helps especially if there is more demand for blood from a particular blood group

- New donors are always needed - each year people have to stop donating due to health issues, pregnancy and foreign travel so NHS Blood and Transplant constantly need to recruit new donors to replace those who can no longer donate

- Most people can be a donor - it's really easy to check if you meet the criteria at www.blood.co.uk or call 0300 123 23 23

- It's rewarding and easy to do - eight out of ten donors say giving blood is rewarding and six out of ten say it's easy to do.

Geraldine Parker, NHS Blood and Transplant's Lead Donor Relations Manager for Dorset, said:

"We value all of our existing donors, but want to build up our donor base to maintain a steady supply of blood, which has a short shelf life, to help save and improve patient lives. In the last 12 months, a total of 5,538 people from Dorset signed up to donate blood, which is fantastic. We want to build on this to ensure we always have the right number of donors of the different blood groups to meet patient needs.  For this year's National Blood Week, we hope the people of Dorset will choose to sign up or come back and give blood to help save a life."

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