Irish News

Tuesday 29 July 2014

Fears that blood banks could run low during World Cup

Mark O'Regan

Published 03/06/2014|02:30

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Blood transfusion clinics are often quieter during the summer
Blood transfusion clinics are often quieter during the summer

PEOPLE are being urged to make a special effort to give blood amid fears the World Cup will hit donations hard over the coming weeks.

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During the summer months – particularly with distractions such as major sporting events – the Irish Blood Transfusion Service (IBTS) often finds that its clinics are quieter than normal.

To ensure that there is an adequate blood supply available – particularly for hospital patients – they have mounted a special appeal.

They are asking the public to donate blood during the coming months and to encourage their friends, family, and colleagues, to do the same.

Some 13,500 donations are required in June if the service is to maintain supplies and avoid shortages.

"This is a World Cup year and traditionally big international sports events have an impact on attendance at donation clinics," said Paddy Bowler, Director of Operations.

"June is also the beginning of the summer holiday period.

"Haemoglobin deferrals increase from 8pc to 12pc over the summer months, due to warmer weather.

"Then typically the holiday season starts at the end of June, so we are asking donors to give blood not only in June, but throughout the summer."

Blood lasts just 35 days and platelets – one of the elements which can stop bleeding – five days.

Irish Independent

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