Hundreds saved by blood donors
8:00pm Sunday 24th February 2013 in Latest News
DEDICATED blood donors from Swindon, who saved up to 2,040 lives between them, have been recognised by NHS Blood and Transplant for their loyalty and commitment.
The life-saving efforts of 50 blood donors from across Wiltshire, Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire were honoured with crystal awards in a ceremony at the Four Pillars Hotel, in Oxford, on February 13.
The blood donors from the region had donated on at least 75 occasions.
Blood donors from Swindon and Royal Wootton Bassett included Charles Stuart, Anthony Laxon and Garry Wooster, awarded for 100 donations each, and John Woodcock, Paul Corengia, Richard Hughes, Erica Russell, Mitchell Steven and Keith Baker, who made 75 donations.
Mr Stuart, who started giving during his first term at university, said: “My wife received blood during and after the birth of our first son, and so did a colleague at work after he was involved in a bad motorbike accident.
“I have continued giving due to awareness that it was helping others and minimal effort was needed. It is not a lot of effort, or pain, involved and it will benefit others.”
Mr Mitchell said: “You save a life by lying down and saying take my blood. Ten minutes is not a lot to help someone.”
Each blood donation can save the lives of up to three people so if a donor has given blood 75 times, they may have helped save the lives of up to 225 patients. Out of the four per cent of the eligible population who give blood, only three per cent ever manage to reach 75 donations and just one per cent reach 100.
Dominic Sutherland, lead donor relations manager for the region at NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “The dedication of all these donors is wonderful and we are delighted to honour them.
“We are grateful for every single donation they have given and we hope it inspires existing donors to keep giving regularly. New donors are also needed, especially young people, and we urge people to give it a try. With Mother's Day approaching, people are being asked to think about the mothers and babies they could help with their donation – each donation can potentially save the lives of three adults or seven babies.”
Anyone wanting to donate for the first time should be aged between 17 to 65, weighing at least 50 kg (7 stone 12lbs) and in good health. People who have donated before can start again up to their 70th birthday and there is no upper limit for donors who have given in the past two years. Call 03001 232323 or visit www.blood.co.uk