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Carol Hirschfeld to Get Kiwi Blood Pumping

NEWS RELEASE 26 April 2006


Carol Hirschfeld to Get Kiwi Blood Pumping

In order to rally more Kiwis to become blood donors, the New Zealand Blood Service has appointed well-known broadcaster, Carol Hirschfeld, as its national ambassador.

Carol will lend her considerable talent to several NZBS initiatives aimed at turning around a significant drop in the numbers of New Zealanders donating blood.

According to NZBS CEO, Dr Graeme Benny, the non-profit organisation generally has just enough blood stocks to meet demand and that situation is becoming more difficult as the number of regular donors continues to fall.

“The appointment of a national ambassador of Carol’s calibre is a major coup and will go a long way in helping us to connect with Kiwis and overcome some of the identified barriers preventing them from donating,” says Dr Benny.

According to the NZBS, Carol needed little persuasion to come onboard and help with its plight.

“I’m delighted to be involved in such a worthwhile cause,” says Carol. “Very few organisations work as ‘hand-to-mouth’ as the Blood Service with blood stocks often falling to critical levels. Blood needs to be frequently shifted around the country to ensure stocks don’t run out in any area. Every day is a challenge.”

According to NZBS, currently only 4% of New Zealanders are donating blood but every week more than 3,000 whole blood donations have to be collected to meet patients’ needs.

“The loss of regular donors is considerable. Last year the NZBS attracted 23,000 new donors, but also lost 28,000 donors in the same period,” says Dr Benny. “We are hoping with Carol onboard that new recruits will flood in.”

ENDS

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