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Would-be blood donor numbers surge after Manchester terror attack

There was a surge in the number of people registering to become blood donors in the aftermath of the Manchester terror attack, new figures show.
Blood_Donation

There was a surge in the number of people registering to become blood donors in the aftermath of the Manchester terror attack, new figures show.

Across England there was a 119% increase in the number of potential donors following the explosion at Manchester Arena on 22 May.

There was also a 1,180% rise in the number of Mancunians signing up to the blood donor register, according to figures obtained by the Press Association.

On average, NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) sees about 6,300 people across England including 73 people from Greater Manchester join the blood donor register each week.

But in the week following the attack, which left 22 dead and around 59 injured, 13,916 people, including 935 Mancunians, signed up across England.

Meanwhile, there was a large increase in the number of people who contacted the donor

There was a surge in the number of people registering to become blood donors in the aftermath of the Manchester terror attack, new figures show.

Blood_Donation
Picture: iStock

Across England there was a 119% increase in the number of potential donors following the explosion at Manchester Arena on 22 May.

There was also a 1,180% rise in the number of Mancunians signing up to the blood donor register, according to figures obtained by the Press Association.

On average, NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) sees about 6,300 people across England –  including 73 people from Greater Manchester – join the blood donor register each week.

But in the week following the attack, which left 22 dead and around 59 injured, 13,916 people, including 935 Mancunians, signed up across England.

Meanwhile, there was a large increase in the number of people who contacted the donor line, on 0300 123 23 23.

On average, the contact centre receives 3,000 phone calls a day, but on the day after the attack it received 17,000.

During the week after the attack hundreds of people were turned away from blood donation sessions in Greater Manchester.

Appointments

NHSBT thanked the public for their interest, but added that blood donor sessions are carried out by appointment so officials can ensure that hospitals have the right amounts and types of blood in stock.

It said it did not know exactly how many people were turned away from blood donor centres in Greater Manchester in the week following the attack, but estimates it was about 1,000.

These people were given information on registering to become new donors if they had not given blood before. Those who had donated before were asked to book appointments in the coming weeks.

NHSBT chief executive Ian Trenholm said: ‘Thank you for thinking of joining the million people who already give blood. These people ensure that there is enough blood on the shelves to support whatever is thrown at us.

‘Donated blood is a bit like food. It has a shelf life of just over a month. We also make other life-saving products from blood and some of these last only a few days.

‘This is why, when there is a tragic event, we ask people not to come in all at once. If everyone comes in at the same time, the blood will expire on the same day and much would go unused.

‘We ask people to spread their donations over the weeks and months that follow the event, even though this can be frustrating for some.’


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