Plea to Manchester blood donors to stop stocks falling low as they struggle ‘due to donor and staff absences’

Blood donors in Manchester are being urged to fill empty appointments at the city’s donor center to stop stocks from falling low. Blood stocks are more likely to drop around public holidays like Easter, when people go on holiday or have days out and skip donating.

Medics are calling on existing blood donors to take up empty appointments at Manchester’s Norfolk House centre. Right now, there is a particular need for donors with O positive and O negative and B negative blood types, though all types remain in demand, according to NHS blood and transplant chiefs.

Blood is needed to treat patients with cancer, blood disorders and those suffering medical trauma or undergoing surgery. Each donation can save or improve up to three lives.

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NHS Blood and Transplant currently has enough blood and services to hospitals remain as normal, but stocks are currently one day below the usual six day target. Donor and staff absences – mostly due to seasonal illnesses and Covid-19 – are putting pressure on its ability to maintain consistent stocks.

Existing donors who are eligible to donate are being urged to make and keep an appointment at Manchester Norfolk House donor centre, where there are plenty of spare spaces. Currently three in ten appointments over the next two weeks are available to book.

Peter Baughan, Head of North Region at NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “We currently have enough blood to meet demand but stocks are vulnerable. As we enter the Easter period it is vital that we continue to collect enough blood.

“We need our amazing donors in Manchester who are fit and healthy – especially those with O blood groups and B negative – to make and keep an appointment for the next few weeks or re-schedule with good notice.

“If you used to donate blood but haven’t done so in a while, please come back if you can – our fantastic team at Manchester Norfolk House donor center will be delighted to welcome you. Every appointment counts this Easter.”

Existing donors are being encouraged to come forward

Existing donors and those who have donated in the past are more likely to be able to donate successfully. Their blood types are known, so during stock builds they are key to ensuring the right volume and mix of blood and blood products.

For those who have already made an appointment, there is a plea to help ensure as many donations go ahead as possible by keeping the appointment or giving as much notice as possible – ideally seven days – if there is a need to reschedule. The slot can then be offered to another donor.

Norfolk House donor center is located at Norfolk House, Brown Street, Manchester, M2 1DA. Book appointments and check the latest guidance on covid-19 and giving blood by visiting, calling 0300 123 23 23 or downloading the NHS Give Blood app.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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