Blood bank needs donors
BLOOD stocks on the Fraser Coast have been consistently low all year and liaison officer Duncan Birt is at a loss to explain it.
What he does know, however, is that the demand for blood and blood products never slows.
Mr Birt said a graph of a normal year of donations would usually show a few highs among the lows, but this year the rate of donations has been consistently below average.
“What we need for people to realise is one in three people will need blood in their lifetime,” he said. “People ignore the need for blood until they are touched by it.”
On three occasions last year the Red Cross service was forced to appeal because of low blood supplies.
Mr Birt said that often after an appeal the levels of blood would spike – then fall back again.
“People have to realise that one donation isn’t going to cut it,” he said.
While a normal blood donor can give blood up to every two months, some blood donors can give blood every two weeks through a plasma donation.
People aged between 18 and 60 in good health with strong veins were ideal candidates for plasma donation, Mr Birt said.
“It’s liquid gold,” he said of plasma.
“It doesn’t have the recuperative time associated with a normal blood donation.”
Mr Birt also took the opportunity to bust some popular myths associated with giving blood.
He said people often said they couldn’t donate because they smoked, were overweight, drank alcohol or had high blood pressure.
He said none of those things prevented people from donating blood.
In the case of a legitimate reason, he said people could encourage someone else to donate in their stead.
BANK YOUR BLOOD
Tuesday 3.30pm – 7pm
Wednesday 3.30pm – 7pm
Thursday 9am – noon
Friday 9am – noon
Monday 2pm – 8pm
Tuesday 9.30am – 1.30pm
Thursday 2pm – 8pm
Friday 9.30am – 1.30pm