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WATCH: World Blood Donor day sees launch of Scottish appeal to boost supplies after Covid-19 slump


By Hector MacKenzie

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The Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service (SNBTS) is marking World Blood Donor Day today by launching a new advertising campaign featuring blood donors from across Scotland.

The campaign, which was filmed in Glasgow in April 2022, aims to help build the donor base as the numbers of blood donors reached record low levels during the COVID19 pandemic.

Debbie McNaughton, SNBTS associate director, Donor Services & Transport said: “We are pleased to launch our new advertising campaign and I would like to extend my thanks to all the donors who have featured in it. The campaign is required to help us recruit new blood donors. We currently have 96,295 blood donors and we need to build this to 105,000 active blood donors. Allowing for people who stop giving blood for various reasons, this means we are asking 16,000 new or returning donors to come forward in the next 12 months.

"Simultaneously, we are currently seeing a 7 per cent increase in the demand for blood from hospitals. This is because NHS Scotland is busy post pandemic with high levels of activity. This is welcome news so we are asking people in Scotland to register as blood donors now, to allow this good work to continue."

Inverness Blood Donor Centre within Raigmore Hospital needs to welcome a minimum of 160 blood donors per week to help support Scotland’s patients.
Inverness Blood Donor Centre within Raigmore Hospital needs to welcome a minimum of 160 blood donors per week to help support Scotland’s patients.

She added: “The global theme for WBDD this year is ‘Giving blood is an act of solidarity. This is fitting as our research shows there remains a great desire to help the NHS and the wider community as we emerge from the pandemic.

"These motivations can be summarised as altruism (helping others) and communitarianism (being part of the collective effort to help the community). Specifically, blood donation is seen as a way to help people in need and give back to the community. These principles have formed the basis of our campaign, which we are calling People Like You. Our message to the people of Scotland is very simple. We need people like you to come forward and register as a blood donor."

Virginia (17), from Springburn Academy in Glasgow, is a blood donor who featured in the campaign. Virginia said: “I personally believe that everyone who can donate blood should do so. It is such a rewarding feeling, knowing that you have made an impact in someone’s life. ‘At first, I was a bit worried, but once you’re there the staff are amazing and the process is pain free. I will definitely go back and donate more blood once my three months are over."

Donors routinely report great satisfaction with their experience giving through the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service.
Donors routinely report great satisfaction with their experience giving through the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service.

She said: “I am so grateful for the opportunity of being involved in the TV ad. I really had lots of fun and it is for such a good cause. I can't thank you enough. I'm looking forward to my next donation already.”

Debbie McNaughton SNBTS associate director, DS&T said: “Our research also shows donors feel pride, a sense of achievement and feelings of personal fulfilment after giving blood. We hope these sentiments are represented in our campaign and in the experience we offer to donors. For customer satisfaction, we consistently receive a score of over 90 per cent for the overall donation experience.

"This means if you have never given blood before, or have not given blood for a while, our message is simple. We need people like you to come forward and give blood. It’s never been easier to register as a blood donor. You can book your appointment online and 84% of active donors now have an online account. Open yours at scotblood.co.uk, and help us keep NHS Scotland running.”

DID YOU KNOW?

World Blood Donor Day takes place on June 14 each year. The day was created to raise global

awareness of the need for safe blood and blood products for transfusion. It also aims to highlight the critical contribution voluntary unpaid blood donors make to national health systems across the world.

 This year, the host country for World Blood Donor Day is Mexico.

 There are 8 different blood groups. SNBTS manages a complex inventory across all blood groups to ensure supplies of each are at safe levels. You can view Scotland’s daily blood stocks on scotblood.co.uk

 This World Blood Donor Day, SNBTS would like to extend particular thanks to volunteers at St John Scotland who partnered with The Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service during the Pandemic.

This initiative saw volunteers support blood donation sessions across the country during COVID-19. The volunteer numbers peaked at 93 in the early days of this arrangement and latterly reduced to 39 regular volunteers. They attended 1267 sessions nationally and provided over 4000 manpower hours. This arrangement ended on Thursday, May 19 as triage has now been removed from sessions due to changes in the COVID guidelines. Thank you to everyone for your support.

 SNBTS are launching an Instagram account this World Blood Donor Day. Follow at

givebloodscotland

 Inverness Blood Donor Centre within Raigmore Hospital needs to welcome a minimum of 160 blood donors per week to help support Scotland’s patients.


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