Appeal for Newry community to donate blood this December

Emma Taylor Posted by
emma@newrytimes.com
Monday, December 5th, 2011
Community

The Northern Ireland Blood Transfusion Service has called on people in the Newry and Mourne area to donate blood this December. In a typical week around five hundred patients in Northern Ireland need a blood transfusion, however  coming up to Christmas is the toughest time of the year for the Northern Ireland Blood Transfusion Service to maintain stocks of blood in order to provide for all those in need.

According to research we spend over one hundred hours on Christmas shopping alone every year, and with all this time wrapped up in the festive season, giving blood can easily slip of the ‘to do’ list. Blood donation is vital to help treat all kinds of patients, from those undergoing surgery for procedures such as hip replacements in the elderly to very premature, severe low birth weight infants. Blood is also vital in the treatment of patients who have undergone chemotherapy or radiotherapy treatment for cancer and also for those who have suffered massive acute blood loss following a traffic accident, trauma or obstetric catastrophe.

Paul McElkerney of the Northern Ireland Blood Transfusion service was on hand today to make an appeal to the people of Newry to make the extra effort this holiday season to attend local blood donation services, which are taking place on Tuesday 6th and Wednesday 7th December in the Newry City Hall.

Speaking to Newry Times, Paul said, “At this time we are trying  to build blood stocks towards Christmas as demand will stay the same from the 500 patients who need blood each and every week but, supply can drop off because people become involved in preparations for Christmas, shopping etc.  Also, the weather can play a role in the numbers attending blood donation sessions but hopefully this cold spell will not be severe enough to stop people attending the Newry sessions this week.”

Paul also further commented that Newry usually has a great turn out from the community to support the blood donation service, due to what hes feels is a “great sense of community spirit in the area.” Paul further added that blood donation is the best present that you could give anyone this Christmas, one that will not cost you a penny and, “If people donate blood this week in Newry City Hall on either Tuesday 6th or Wednesday 7th, they will literally be helping patients live to enjoy Christmas.”


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