The NHS is calling for new Sussex donors to help save lives ahead of National Blood Week.
The annual awareness event, which recently changed dates to June 19 to 25, seeks to see more people consider giving blood and help save the lives of people in serious situations.
This year’s efforts come in the face of falling numbers of registered blood donors in the UK.
The date of National Blood Week has changed to 19th-25th June and we at NHS Blood and Transplant want to spread the word that people who donate blood, save lives.
A spokesman for NHS Blood and Transplant said: “In the UK, we need 200,000 new donors every year to maintain life-saving blood supplies for people in vital need. But recently the number of people registering to give blood has declined. Particularly amongst young people.
“There is also an urgent need for 40,000 new black donors to improve the lives of thousands of patients with sickle cell disease across England. Sickle cell disease is the most common and fastest growing generic blood disorder in England and in the UK. It is a serious condition effecting the blood and various organs – causing extreme pain, life threatening infections and other complications such as stroke or loss of vision.
“Blood transfusions can help prevent or relieve these systems. These patients need blood that is closely matched to their own to get the best treatment. Black donors are more likely have a special blood type with the Ro sub-type which is needed by many sickle cell patients - yet currently, only 1 per cent of blood donors are black.
“All donors talk of how good it feels to help people they do not know by donating blood and recipients express sincere gratitude at the selflessness of blood donors.”
For information on how to become a blood donor visit www.blood.co.uk.
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