NHS Launch Blood Donor Appeal Following Cyber Attack

England’s top doctor has backed calls from NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) for O Positive and O Negative blood donors to urgently book appointments to donate in one of the 25 town and city centre NHS Blood Donor Centres in England, to boost stocks of O type blood following the cyber incident in London.

It comes as the NHS reveals this week – National Blood Week – that three blood donations are needed every minute in hospitals to deal with emergencies, childbirth and routine treatments as it calls on more people to become lifesaving donors.

There are around 13,000 appointments available nationally this week in NHS Blood Donor Centres with 3,400 available in London alone.The NHS is advising all patients to continue coming forward as normal following the cyber-attack.

The IT incident affecting a pathology provider means the affected hospitals cannot currently match patients’ blood at the same frequency as usual. For surgeries and procedures requiring blood to take place, hospitals need to use O type blood as this is safe to use for all patients and blood has a shelf life of 35 days, so stocks need to be continually replenished.

Professor Stephen Powis, Medical Director for NHS England explained that: “NHS staff are continuing to go above and beyond to minimise the significant disruption to patients following the ransomware cyber-attack on Synnovis earlier this week. Urgent and emergency services are available as usual so patients should access services in the normal way by dialling 999 in an emergency and otherwise use NHS 111 through the NHS App, online or on the phone”.

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