Malcolm Wood makes a donation. Picture: Contributed
Malcolm Wood makes a donation. Picture: Contributed

URGENT: Donors needed to avoid Christmas blood shortage

Central Queenslanders are urged to give blood between Christmas and the New Year to avoid lifesaving blood stocks running low.

Australian Red Cross Lifeblood needs 100 blood and plasma donors in Rockhampton and 75 donors in Gladstone.

With many donors expected to travel and back-to-back long weekends coming up, Lifeblood is calling on people to factor a blood donation into their plans this festive season.

“It can be a challenging time for blood supplies as the need for blood doesn’t stop over the holiday period,” Lifeblood spokeswoman Belinda Smetioukh said.

Australian Red Cross Lifeblood needs blood and plasma donors in Rockhampton and in Gladstone. Picture: Contributed
Australian Red Cross Lifeblood needs blood and plasma donors in Rockhampton and in Gladstone. Picture: Contributed

Ms Smetioukh said despite donors responding to a call out in record numbers last month, the need for short-lived platelets was constant.

“Platelets only last for five days so we’re unable to stockpile them ahead of long weekends or busy periods,” she said.

“Adding to the challenge is the fact it takes blood donations from four people to make just one dose of platelets used to help cancer patients recover from their intensive treatments.”

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She said those involved in road accidents, undergoing surgery, and women experiencing complications during childbirth would also be relying on blood donations to help them make it through.

“Timing is critical and the period between December 26 and January 2 is when platelet stocks are most under pressure,” she said.

“Donating blood or plasma is one of the most powerful gifts you can give. For some it may give them more time with loved ones or improve their quality of life, and for others, it could quite literally save their life.”

To check opening hours at donor centres or to book a donation visit lifeblood.com.au, call 13 14 95 or download the Donate Blood app.



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