Giving The Gift Of Life This Holiday Season

Victorians are being urged to roll up their sleeves and generously give the gift of life-saving blood this festive season.

Minister for Health Jenny Mikakos today visited the Melbourne CBD Blood Donor Centre to help launch the Australian Red Cross Blood Service’s holiday season blood donation drive.

The state-of-the-art CBD Blood Donor Centre is open every day of the holiday season except for New Year’s Day, taking vital blood donations that can save up to three lives. The Andrews Labor Government gives the National Blood Authority $110 million for the resources it needs to make sure hospitals can access blood.

The Blood Service collects nearly 25,000 blood donations each week in Australia, but that number can dip during the holiday season.

Often during this time, people cancel, postpone or fail to show up for appointments, impacting blood supplies available for patients in an emergency.

The need for blood doesn’t take a break. Donations are just as important during the holiday season, and blood is likely to be ordered by hospitals the same week it is donated.

A list-minute cancellation or failure to attend leaves the Blood Service without enough time to replace the donor.

Every blood donation can save up to three lives. It is estimated that one in three Australians will need blood in their lifetime, but only one in 30 people donate blood.

To give blood, call 13 14 95 or visit www.donateblood.com.au

Quotes attributable to Minister for Health Jenny Mikakos

“While most people are enjoying a break, the demand for blood doesn’t stop. The Melbourne CBD Blood Donor Centre remains open and I encourage everyone who can to give the gift of life-saving blood this holiday season.”

“One in three of us will require blood in their lifetime, but only one in 30 of us donate. By donating blood, you’re potentially helping save the lives of cancer patients, babies and road trauma victims.”

Quotes attributable to Australian Red Cross Blood Service Executive Director Cath Stone

“We understand people may be busy planning their end-of-year festivities, however there are patients who aren’t so lucky and who will still be needing blood products during this time.”

“Historically, we see a drop in the number of people donating blood over long weekends or public holidays, and this weekend and New Year’s Eve are no different.”