Blood donors in 'anaemia' alert
Blood from women who made donations in the past 18 months have been temporarily suspended, after a device to measure iron deficiency was found to be inaccurate.
The Irish Blood Transfusion Service (IBTS) said "as a result, some women, and probably a much smaller number of men, could have been rendered iron deficient and anaemic from blood donations in the past 18 months". Over the next few weeks, the IBTS will introduce new software to re-analyse the electronic results from all donors who have been tested and accepted for donation since it introduced the device.
Donors will be notified.
"We ask any concerned donors who contact us to attend their GP if they are worried that they might be anaemic or iron deficient. We will meet the cost of attending their doctor and iron studies," said medical director Dr William Murphy.
It means the service is now more reliant on male donors to maintain supplies.
"Until we have a resolution to the problem that has arisen, we are asking male donors to attend our clinics and give blood.
"We need male donors to make an extra effort to donate and maintain the blood supply. We will be double checking all haemoglobin results on these donors."