Younger people are being encouraged to donate blood during National Blood Week, which began today (Monday, June 10).
The call has been prompted by news that almost half of all active blood donors are over the age of 45.
The week is aimed at encouraging people to find out more about blood and blood donation – or to ‘Know Blood, Give Blood’.
Donated blood is used to treat a wide variety of illnesses, including many types of cancers such as leukaemia.
Shailesh Mistry, NHS Blood and Transplant’s lead donor relations manager for Northamptonshire, 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, 5,668 people from Northamptonshire 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.”
During National Blood Week people can find out more about blood donation and how blood is used at one of NHS Blood and Transplant’s recruitment events, by visiting www.blood.co.uk or by following NHS Blood and Transplant’s Facebook www.facebook.com/NHSBlood and Twitter (@GiveBloodNHS) pages.
Anyone aged between 17 and 65, weighing more than 50kg (7st 12lbs) and in general good health can become a blood donor.
A donor session is taking place at the Cornmarket Hall in Kettering in Tuesday, June 18, between 1.15 and 3.30pm and 4.30 ad 7.15pm.
Phone 0300 123 23 23 to book an appointment, which is recommended.
Use the same number to find out about future blood donor sessions.