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Blood bank shortages expected while people away on holidays

Sue Murray and Ian Samuels at the Red cross blood van in Coolangatta. Photo: John Gass / Daily News
Sue Murray and Ian Samuels at the Red cross blood van in Coolangatta. Photo: John Gass / Daily News John Gass

THE Red Cross Blood Service is desperate for donations to avoid a possible shortage over the coming days.

More than 7500 donors are needed between December 29 and January 4 as the Red Cross collects platelets for important treatments, including chemotherapy for cancer patients.

The issue is that platelets only last for five days, and many people will be away over the holidayperiod.

The Red Cross needs donors to rally together today to top up essential platelets until blood donations return to normal on January 2.

Red Cross spokesman Shaun Inguanzo said he was concerned about blood supplies.

"The issue for us is that platelets only live for five days, and so we need as many donors as possible on the Monday, which is New Year's Eve, to top up suppliers until donors return on 2 January and beyond," he said.

Mr Inguanzo said that blood donated would go to a very worthy cause.

"If you know someone who has battled or is currently battling cancer then you know how tiring the treatment can be," he said.

"Donated blood is a source of vitality for those undergoing chemotherapy.

"Just an hour of your time could mean a lifetime to someone else this New Year period so please roll up your sleeves and make an appointment to give blood."

One in three Australians will need blood at some stage in their lives, but only one in 30 people donate.

To give blood call the Red Cross on 13 14 95 or visit donateblood.com.au

Topics:  blood bank coolangatta red cross



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