After low NHS donor rates, health authorities send blood test kits to homes

After low NHS donor rates, health authorities send blood test kits to homes

Health officials will provide home test kits to the public so they may learn their blood type in an effort to recruit new donors for stockpiles that are running low, The Mail on Sunday can exclusively disclose.

Two weeks after NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) issued its first “amber notice” about low stockpiles, the campaign was launched. Days afterwards, 40,000 current donors had scheduled appointments.

In order to identify new sign-ups with blood types that are more likely to be in short supply, NHS administrators are now planning to mail finger-prick kits to new participants.

The tests analyze a little drop of blood on a test card and may quickly determine your blood type.

NHSBT issued the amber alert after O negative (O-) blood supplies fell to less than two days’ worth, or one-third of the recommended six days. Only 7% of Britons possess O-, yet it may be administered to any patient without being rejected by the immune system. O- is used when other blood types are out of supply.

Although supplies are nearly back to six days, the warning won’t be withdrawn until they are safe enough to meet anticipated demand growth.

The effort, according to an NHSBT representative, aims to “ensure stockpiles never approach amber again.”

Over the next five years, the agency will require one million new donors in addition to twice as many regular donors of the rarest blood types.

However, a union representative at NHSBT, who wished to remain unnamed, said that personnel constraints and the organization’s management style were to blame for the shortfalls.

»After low NHS donor rates, health authorities send blood test kits to homes«

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