Give the gift of blood this Christmas

The people of Derry are being urged to give blood after it was revealed that stock levels are worrying low ahead of Christmas.

The city’s public is being urged to give the gift of blood this festive season as demand is outweighing supply.

Northern Ireland Blood Transfusion Service (NIBTS) launched its Christmas appeal for blood in November but uptake has not been able to meet the need for blood and platelets.

It’s been revealed that up to 25% of intending donors have deferred giving blood because of having colds, flus or other illnesses, or having had piercings or tattoos in the last 12 months.

Paul McElkerney, a spokesperson for the NIBTS, said: “500 patients are receiving blood in Northern Ireland each and every week, so if demand stays the same but supply takes a dip, stocks become depleted. Unfortunately over the last week or so we’ve seen quite a large dip in the supply of blood.

“It’s now important that people come forward to give blood between now and Christmas Eve,” he added.