Dedicated blood donors recognised

Droitwich Advertiser: Christopher Wilson and Roger Atkins celebrate their life-saving achievements. Christopher Wilson and Roger Atkins celebrate their life-saving achievements.

DEDICATED donors from Droitwich, who have given blood dozens of times between them, have been recognised for rolling up their sleeves to help save lives.

Roger Atkins and Christopher Wilson were presented with crystal plates after reaching the wonderful milestone of 75 donations.

Each blood donation can potentially save the lives of up to three people so if a donor has given blood 75 times they have potentially helped save the lives of up to 225 patients in local hospitals.

Altogether the pair have given blood more than 150 times, potentially helping more than 450 patients.

They were honoured at a recent awards ceremony held by NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT).

Mr Wilson, aged 61, has been giving blood for around 30 years after attending a session at work.

The local government officer said: “Wanting to help other people, putting something back into the community, has kept me giving.

“My mother-in-law received blood during heart surgery.”

The donors were joined by others from across the Midlands and beyond, with around 50 donors being recognised for their dedication.

The awards ceremony is a way of acknowledging the commitment that long serving blood donors give to saving the lives of others. It is also hoped it will encourage existing and new donors.

Shai Mistry, lead donor relations manager at NHSBT, said: "The commitment that these blood donors have shown to donating blood throughout their lives is remarkable and we hope this inspires others to follow.

“Blood has a limited shelf life of 35 days for red blood cells and just seven days for platelets. Because of this, it is vital that both existing and new blood donors come forward now, so we can ensure that vital supplies of blood are available for the patients that need them over the summer months.”

Donated blood is used not only in accident and emergency situations, but also for patients undergoing surgery and receiving treatment for cancer and blood diseases, such as leukaemia. Currently 7,000 units of blood are needed every day to help save the lives of sick and injured patients across England and North Wales.

Anyone aged over 17 and in general good health could potentially start saving lives by becoming a blood donor. For details of sessions in the area or to book an appointment call 0300 123 23 23 or visit blood.co.uk

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