How easy is it to give blood?

#1
Had a discussion with my wife (who is a NHS Ward Sister) about donations to the BTS. Both of us are individuals who somehow manage to give blood about once a year despite the best efforts of the BTS to avoid us.

In both cases we give blood when a Transfusion Service bus sets up at our respective civilian workplaces and then only because it is officially organised and we have planned for staff flexibility over the course of the day.

Other than that, neither of us has the time available to go looking for a donation centre.

So here’s something I hope will generate some debate amongst you AMS types:

Would there be merit in a permanent donation centre being set up in every NHS General Hospital to cater to the thousands (going by number of spaces in the public car parks) of daytime visitors to people in hospital. It could also serve staff and is clearly an easy place to get to with most hospitals having decent car parking so would be a far better location than, say, a city centre site.

NHS Hospitals presumably being the BTS’s biggest customer, I would have thought it more appropriate for them to give over space for blood donations than for private trading businesses (other than WRVS which obviously have a vital function as well)

A straw poll of 2, but we would both give more regularly if the BTS was located in any of the hospitals near us.
 
#3
I agree - I keep missing the one near work becuse I am out of the office. They only organise it twice a year. If I could just walk into any hospital and show my donor card and give blood I would go every six months
 
#4
What's the score with units in Germany these days, when I was in the regs a German blood collecting mob used to turn up at our unit at least every year. After I got out and settled here I used to give blood regularly (well it's the free scoff and very attractive female helpers).

I havn't however given blood for a few years now as apparently British blood isn't pure enough for the German system, something to do with BSE. Anyone who was in the UK for more than 6 months during the critical period in the 80s is no longer allowed to give blood (or that was the situation when I stopped may have changed).

Do the Germans still collect squaddie blood?
 
#5
Not sure about the Germans but I know the Dutch have a problem with it. I used to work in the hospital in Sipovo (Bosnia) and the Dutch wouldn't let their blokes be transfused with Brit blood so they provided all the claret for everyone.

On the other matter, I have just done a course at St. Georges in Tooting and they have a BTS centre there where I believe you can give blood. I think there should be more of this sort of thing though. If they are serious about getting peoples blood then they should work to accomodate the stupid hours that people these days work.
 
#6
It could also serve staff and is clearly an easy place to get to with most hospitals having decent car parking so would be a far better location than, say, a city centre site.

which hospital do you live near, all the hospitals round me a) charge the earth for parking b) are always full, especially at visiting times.

I know a lot of major cities have permanent donation centres, but cant find a link at the mo. But have found this http://www.blood.co.uk/pages/a1where.html which tells you were you can donate.... hope its useful

S-D
 
#8
If I remember correctly the BTS will go to any organisation that offers it’s services in a mobile van, Keogh Barracks has done it in the past and had a very good turn out (something about getting out of PT).

When there is a session in your area you can now book an appointment reducing your waiting time and most mobile sites are open until around 1900Hrs.

There is a permanent BTS donor centre in Edgware hospital North London for those in that area.

The Germans don’t want the risk of BSE in blood so you can’t give them yours. In the UK the only BSE affect we have is that you cannot donate if you have received blood or blood products yourself in the past.

Given 17 times, but hey I only do it for the free cup of tea
 
#9
Worm-on-a-stick, your going for the lapel badges ain't ya. Admit it 'Your a collector'.

I seem to remember there used to be a Roll of Honour at the ABSD, Aldershot. They done some fantastic work there in Blood collection and storage. I done my Blood and Re-supply course there in the early eighties, I can still remember how to cross match even after all theese years.
Looked into donor hagging a couple of years ago, but, it,s quite hard for a non qualified nurse to get into, though I do know a couple who were not.
Well done to all those who do give blood, it,s painless and takes 15 mins of your time.

So come on you Blood donning virgins, get down to your local unit ASAP.
 
#10
No change on the situation in Germany. They still don't want any blood from people who lived in/visited the UK between 1980 and 1996.

In fact it is even better than that.

Haben Sie sich in der Zeit vom 01.01.1980 bis 31.12.1996 insgesamt länger als sechs Monate im Vereinigten Königreich
Großbritannien und Nordirland aufgehalten?
Wer während des angegebenen Zeitraums länger als sechs Monate in diesen Gebieten war, darf dauerhaft nicht spenden.
10. Hatten Sie jemals Operationen im Vereinigten Königreich Großbritannien und Nordirland?
Falls „JA“, welche?
Wer sich jemals nach dem 1.1.1980 in diesen Gebieten einer Operation unterzogen hat, bei welcher Blut übertragen
wurde oder bei welcher in der Regel Blutübertragungen erforderlich sind, darf dauerhaft nicht spenden.
Quick and dirty translation.
If you have spent longer than 6 months in UK between the dates you can never give blood.
If you have had an operation in the UK since 1980 you can never donate blood.


In that case sod 'em.
 
#11
Steven said:
No change on the situation in Germany.

In that case sod 'em.
Yep that's how I remember it when I stood gob smacked reading through the new rules, you just saved me a walk.

Ah well no freeby sarnies and coffee anymore over here, I'll just have to see about donating when I go back to the UK.

I agree sod 'em.
 
#12
worm-on-a-stick said:
If I remember correctly the BTS will go to any organisation that offers it’s services in a mobile van, Keogh Barracks has done it in the past and had a very good turn out (something about getting out of PT).
Yes they will but it needs an individual in the organisation to sell the idea to everyone else and do all the organising. They are also very reluctant to deploy at weekends - I no longer bother asking for TA Day and we had over 1,000 visitors at the last event they said they couldn't go to.

worm-on-a-stick said:
There is a permanent BTS donor centre in Edgware hospital North London for those in that area.
Thanks for that, exactly what I think should be happening nationwide. Do you, or does anyone else, know how successful it is?
 
#13
I encountered similar thing over here when I asked why did we not have a regular collection day(s). "Blah, blah....cost prohibitive....blah, blah....staffing issues....blah, blah....risk management.." I even offered to do the running around to get it all organised (please God, in future stop me being so keen to do worthwhile things!) and got a couple of others roped in with me. We got it all prepped and ready to go for x date. I represented the idea but was informed in no uncertain terms it was not on, was not feasible and if I continued to agitate it would 'go badly' for me. Bit of a wah the last bit really until I found out that the same person telling me it "couldn't be done" had been told to organise something months back and they had been telling their boss it "couldn't be done as it was cost prohibitive....blah, blah...."


Laugh? :roll:
 

OldSnowy

LE
Moderator
Book Reviewer
#14
After lots of regular donating I got the bum's rush a few years ago as, when filling in the form, I ticked that I had been 'hillwalking' in Cenral/South America. Actually it was a Tour in Belize, but by God we walked up a few hills.

Apparently, the chances of Chaga's Disease make it too dangerous for me to donate.

Anyone know if the rule is still in force, as if more widely known it could rule out everyone in the Army who has ever been to Belize?
 
#15
I was under the impression that the BTS is far enough advanced to break blood down into different bits and use that which could be deemed safe i.e. just the plasma if the blood cells are potentially infected. I am however not a clinical being.
 
#16
The Scottish NBTS has donor centres in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee, Aberdeen and Inverness.

Aberdeen Blood Donor Centre
Foresterhill Road, Foresterhill
Aberdeen
AB25 2ZW

# Tues and Wed: 4.00pm-7.30
# Fri: 8.30am-10.30am

Dundee Blood Donor Centre
Level 8, Ninewells Hospital
Dundee

# Wed (appointments available): 10am-5.30pm
# Wed (no appointment necessary): 2pm-6pm

Edinburgh Blood Donor Centre
41 Lauriston Place
Edinburgh
EH3 9HB

# Mon & Fri: 10am-4pm
# Tues-Thurs: 12pm-7.30pm
# Sat: 10am-1pm


Glasgow
Glasgow Blood Donor Centre
8 Nelson Mandela Place
Glasgow
G2 1BT

# Mon, Tues: 11am-4.30pm
# Wed, Thu: 11am-7pm
# Fri: 9.30am-4.30pm
# Sat: 9.30am-2.30pm

Inverness Blood Donor Centre
Raigmore Hospital
Inverness
IV2 3UJ

# Mon: 3pm-6pm (appointments only)
# Fri: 10am-12:30pm (appointments only)
# Last Wed in every month: 11am-7pm (no appointment necessary)

alternatively visit http://www.scotblood.co.uk for alternative donor sessions outwith the main donor centres.

I wish they would bring back the pens again for the three times promise... bloody good quality, weighty rollerball types... but we'll see what surprises they bring when I give my third donation next month. (Donation #21)

Good luck!
 
#17
^Good advert Cheeks and very welcome but I still would welcome strong feedback on my original post

abacus said:
Would there be merit in a permanent donation centre being set up in every NHS General Hospital to cater to the thousands (going by number of spaces in the public car parks) of daytime visitors to people in hospital. It could also serve staff and is clearly an easy place to get to with most hospitals having decent car parking so would be a far better location than, say, a city centre site.
How do the Ninewells and Raigmore BTSs compare in donation levels to those in City Centres?
 
#18
My experience of the co-located donor centres is of seasonally fluctuating attendance. Trying to get a spot during the summer is relatively easy whereas in the winter time it's considerably harder.

From chatting to one of the donation assistants she thought that the "hard-core" of regular donators would visit their donor centre wherever it was the problem is getting people into the loop and hence this train of thought.

The three times promise incentive helps to a certain extent but some local based initiatives then to keep the wavering donors coming back. Such incentives are generally an employer based league table... worked on donations per company.

To be honest I would expect there to be little difference between the figures (hospital co-located vs city centre) as the bulk of the donors (who happen to be regulars) dismiss the travel to their nearest location as a hurdle.