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​Call for male blood donors in Southwark

NHS Blood Donation.jpgMen in Southwark are being urged to make a New Year commitment to help save lives across London – by agreeing to become a blood donor.

Over the last 12 months, almost 70,000 Londoners, including 3,268 in Southwark, started donating blood – and their donations will save and improve lives.

However, during 2019, only 43 per cent of the new donors in Greater London were men.

By the end of November, 10,555 women had started donating blood in Greater London but only 7,986 men. It is vital that more men start giving blood to get the balance right.

Men are particularly important donors for two reasons: they can donate more often because they have higher iron levels, and their blood can be used in more ways – some of them extraordinary. For example, only men's blood is used to give complete blood transfusions to newborn babies.

Sir David Sloman, Regional Director for the NHS in London said: "This is about saving lives. The NHS needs more men in London to start donating blood regularly - they have the power to change someone's future with a simple act of kindness. I urge every man who can donate to sign up today."

Dr Jonty Heaversedge, a local GP and chair of NHS Southwark Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said: "Hundreds of local people are already regular blood donors, selflessly giving up their time to save the lives of others. But we need more men in Southwark to sign up.

"It's easy to sign up and book your first appointment online or via our mobile phone app.

"By donating blood you will save or improve the lives of up to three people. Make a positive difference in 2020. Give blood."

NHS Blood and Transplant currently supplies all the blood that hospitals require but it needs more young men to start giving blood to ensure there is a strong enough donor base in the long term.

Nadine Eaton, Head of Blood Donor recruitment at NHS Blood and Transplant, said: "We need more men to register as new blood donors in London this new year.

"Ordinary people can become extraordinary life-savers when they donate blood. If you can't find an appointment right away don't worry – your blood will do extraordinary things if you donate in a few weeks instead."