Sainsbury’s backs the call for blood donors

By Ian Dipple Friday 01 February 2013 Updated: 01/02 10:35

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Buy photos » Karen Lumley MP signs up to donate blood with donor relations co-ordinators Karen Healy and Gemma Room. Picture by Marcus Mingins. 0513006MMR.

SHOPPERS are being urged to help top up national blood stocks while stocking up their cupboards.

Sainsbury’s has joined forces with NHS Blood and Transplant to help its bid to recruit 100,000 new donors in 100 days, including 10,000 in the West Midlands.

The focus is mainly on 17 to 24-year-olds as the number of donors in this age group has declined by about 20 per cent in the last decade, but people of all ages and blood types are needed.

Staff will be in store on certain days to provide information and register people to sign up. Sainsbury’s pharmacy is backing the campaign by providing free cholesterol checks.

Shailesh Mistry, lead donor relations manager for NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “We have tremendous support already from the Redditch area and our regular donors are great ambassadors for donation, but it’s making sure we keep that momentum going and recruit news ones as well.

“Each donation can potentially save up to three lives so by becoming a blood donor you really can make a difference.”

The campaign began last Friday and 26 people either signed up to donate or asked for more information. Redditch MP Karen Lumley also visited to show her support.

She said: “I’ve signed up to give blood myself even though the last time I passed out, although that was some years ago.

“It’s vitally important we get more blood donors and I’m delighted to see the local support being given by Sainsbury’s.”

A total of 8,000 units of blood are needed every day to meet hospital demand. Those thinking of giving blood for the first time, aged 17 to 65, weighing at least 7st 12lb and in general good health are eligible to donate.

NHS Blood and Transplant staff will be enrolling people at the Alvechurch Highway store on February 3, 8, 14, 22 and 24. Free cholesterol checks will be available throughout the campaign.

Anyone interested in donating can also call 0300 123 2323 for more information.

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