Drop off in exotic trips helps blood donations
THE steep drop in the number of people taking holidays in tropical countries has resulted in an unexpected boon for the blood transfusion service.
Fewer people are now being stopped from giving blood for several months' due to the dangers of exotic diseases.
"The economic situation means there are less deferrals for travel now," Kieran Healy, the Irish Blood Transfusion Service's (IBTS) donor services manager, explained.
Donors who have travelled to a malarial area cannot give blood for a year, while those who visited a tropical area face a three-month deferral period.
The IBTS yesterday said there had been a "great public response" after they urged donors earlier this month to make a special effort to give blood after severe snow and ice caused the cancellation and deferrals of a number of collection clinics.
A spokeswoman said the blood supply continues to be "strong". The IBTS expects to collect about 153,000 donations from around 113,000 regular donors by the end of this year.