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New Zealand Blood Service Seeks To Fill 32,000 Appointments Over Summer

New Zealand Blood Service (NZBS) has more than 32,000 appointments to be filled between now and the end of January to meet demand over the holiday season.

Last year 55,323 units of blood, plasma and platelets were issued to patients across New Zealand between December and end of January.

NZBS National Marketing and Communications Manager Asuka Burge says the Service is forecasting a four percent increase over that same period this holiday season.

“As people enjoy a well-earned break over summer, we tend to experience a dip in the number of people donating. However, the reality is the need for blood and plasma does not stop for those who get sick, have accidents or require ongoing treatment.

“That’s why we’re asking everyone to consider their plans for the next few weeks, and please find time to donate. An hour spent giving blood or plasma can mean the difference between life and death for someone else just a few days later.

“All blood types are needed – but right now, we’re making a special call for those who are A positive to roll up their sleeve and donate blood in the lead-up to the Christmas period. As one of the most common blood types in New Zealand, we always experience high demand for A positive blood and that looks set to continue over the coming months.”

There are 10 donor centres across New Zealand, and NZBS will be hosting more than 170 mobile drives across the country between now and the end of January.

With people likely to be visiting different parts of Aotearoa during the holiday break, Ms Burge suggests downloading the NZ Blood Service Donor App so they can check their eligibility, find their nearest location to donate and book an appointment.

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“Not only does the app make it easy to book an appointment, but donors are also notified when their donation is used to help a patient. While we know people who give blood or plasma don’t do it for the kudos, it’s still a rewarding feeling when your phone beeps and you’re told that your donation has helped to save a life.”

Every week, more than 5000 donations are needed to help patients who rely on blood and blood products.

“The selflessness and generosity of our donors ensures patients at their most vulnerable are able to receive the blood and blood products they need when they need them,” says Ms Burge.

“If you’ve never donated before, now’s the perfect time to join our whanau of lifesavers. The festive season is about giving and for someone in hospital, a blood or plasma donation will be the best gift they ever receive.”

Download the NZ Blood Service Donor App, visit www.nzblood.co.nz or call 0800 448 325 to book an appointment to donate.

© Scoop Media

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