Donate blood to start New Year

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Give blood and give life for your New Year’s resolution.

That’s the message from the NHS Blood and Transplant service as it urges Leeds to get on board its nationwide campaign to get more people donating blood and saving lives in 2016.

Only three per cent of people aged from 17-70 gave blood during the last year but just one donation can save or improve up to three lives and would be an “inspirational” way to start the new year.

Amanda Eccles, senior marketing coordinator at NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “The New Year is a time when a lot of people focus on giving things up. We’re asking people in West Yorkshire to focus on giving, and to register to give blood.

“It’s easy to sign up and book your first appointment using our website and mobile apps. Please don’t just give up something this January. Give life, too.”

Donated blood can be a lifesaver for those who have been in an accident or are undergoing treatments and operations. A blood transfusion can also improve the quality of life of people in the final stages of their lives.

More than half of blood donors are aged over 45 so NHS Blood and Translant is hoping to recruit younger people to donate now and in the years to come.

The service is also looking for new donors from black and Asian communities, and donors with the universal blood group O negative, as well as from groups A negative, B negative and AB negative.

Most people can give blood if they are fit and healthy, weigh over 7 stone 12 lbs (50kg) and are aged between 17 and 66 (up to 70 if they have given blood before). People aged over 70 must have given blood in the last two years to continue donating.