This Christmas give blood
25 December 2015
Natalie Outten, hospital transfusion practitioner at Southend Hospital, is urging people to donate blood this Christmas – a time of year when donations tend to fall.
This drive comes on the back of a successful awareness campaign
in November whereby Natalie responded to a rallying cry from both
the NHS Blood and Transplant service and the Sickle Cell
Sickle cell disease causes the haemoglobin in sufferers'
normally flexible round red blood cells to become sickle shaped.
This abnormal shape causes red cells to clump together and get
stuck in the blood vessels, restricting blood flow and causing
severe pain, serious infections and organ damage.
Sickle cell disease is an inherited, lifelong disorder which
affects 15,000 people in Britain. Treatments include medication,
blood transfusions and bone marrow transplants.
Natalie said: "Blood is a finite resource and we currently rely
on just 4% of the population to donate blood. The stock at the
National Blood Service is sometimes only two days' worth for
certain blood groups. There is always a need for new donors and for
those who have lapsed to start again - it could be the gift that a
patient is waiting for.
If you would like to give blood please call the NHS Blood and
Transplant service on 0300 123 23 23 or visit the NHS Blood and
Transplant website www.blood.co.uk .