Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - 2016 YOUR GUIDE TO CHRISTMAS -

THE Red Cross Blood Donor Cen­tre has put out an ur­gent call to peo­ple in the Can­ning re­gion to do­nate blood ahead of the fes­tive sea­son, re­veal­ing just 10 peo­ple had booked to give blood over the en­tire Christ­mas break.

WA is the na­tion’s worst donor state, and in the Can­ning area, 110 peo­ple are still needed to do­nate blood be­tween Christ­mas and New Year.

Blood do­na­tions pre­vent a short­age of blood prod­ucts and the de­mand for blood never stops; with one prod­uct vi­tal to can­cer treat­ment – platelets – hav­ing a shelf life of just a few days, mean­ing a con­stant sup­ply through­out the fes­tive sea­son is needed.

Blood Ser­vice spokes­woman Jes­sica Wil­let said the Red Cross was launch­ing a Christ­mas ‘blood blitz’ to help fill ap­point­ments.

“Thou­sands of Aus­tralian pa­tients will need blood this Christ­mas and New Year just to have the hope of spend­ing those mo­ments with friends and fam­ily," she said.

"Can­cer pa­tients are the big­gest users of do­nated blood and rely on platelets to make it through chemo­ther­apy.

“The prob­lem is platelets can­not be stock­piled, so we need a con­stant, fresh sup­ply, as any­thing col­lected be­fore Christ­mas Eve will have ex­pired or run-out long be­fore New Year’s Eve.”

Cannington donors are among the mil­lions of Aus­tralians busy with Christ­mas shop­ping and hol­i­days, lead­ing to a wor­ry­ing drop in donor num­bers dur­ing the tra­di­tional Christ­mas shutdown pe­riod and Ms Wil­lett urged the com­mu­nity to make time to roll up their sleeves.

“With only 10 peo­ple booked in to do­nate blood at Cannington on Thurs­day, De­cem­ber 29, we re­ally need more peo­ple from the com­mu­nity to do­nate this Christ­mas,” Ms Wil­let said.

“With WA alone set to spend $5.3 bil­lion lead­ing up to Christ­mas, the great­est gift of all will cost you just an hour of your time and could help to save three lives.”

Cannington Blood Donor Cen­tre is open Mon­day-Fri­day through­out the Christ­mas break, in­clud­ing the pub­lic hol­i­days on Box­ing Day, De­cem­ber 27 and Jan­uary 2.

Call 13 14 95 or visit­nate­

Pic­ture: Matt Jelonek­mu­ni­ d463316

Donor Bre­nae Beat­tie, of Bent­ley, with en­rolled nurse Re­becca Ford.

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