Welsh Government fund new fleet of Welsh Blood Service vehicles
The Welsh Government has invested over £900,000 to help fund a fleet of new vehicles that will be used by the Welsh Blood Service.
The new fleet includes two six-bed Mobile Donor Clinics, two support vehicles to work in conjunction with the Mobile Donor Clinics, one equipment vehicle and four delivery/collection vehicles.
The Welsh Blood service relies entirely on volunteer donors to maintain blood supply to 16 Welsh hospitals in south, mid and west Wales. They supply nearly 2,000 units to these hospitals every week however only 6% of the eligible population are active blood donors.
The new Mobile Donor Clinics aims to make giving blood as comfortable and easy as possible with specialist donation chairs and an extra privacy booth to help the flow of donors as well as improved disabled access. The new mobile units are expected to account for up to 24% of Welsh Blood Service donations every year.
Speaking of his visit to see the new Mobile Donor Clinics Wales Government Health Minister, Mark Drakeford said:
"The Wales Blood Service plays a fundamental role in the delivery of healthcare in Wales and I’m delighted that the Welsh Government is able to support the work that they do through a £900,000 investment in a new fleet of vehicles.
"A vast majority of the population who are aged between 17 and 65 can become a blood donor however only 6% of the eligible population choose to be active blood donors.
"I hope that these new vehicles will make giving blood as comfortable and accessible as possible to allow the Welsh Blood Service to recruit some much needed new donors.”
Dr Geoff Poole, Director at the Welsh Blood Service said:
"We are very excited about the new mobile clinics and support vehicles. They offer a much improved experience for blood donors, which is incredibly important for us in maintaining the blood supply for hospitals.
"There is always a need to look for new places for our life-saving vehicle to visit, if you would like to see our new look blood mobile near you, please get in touch.”
The blood that the Welsh Blood service collects does not just support accidents and emergencies, but helps with surgical, medical, cancer and leukaemia patients who all may need blood transfusions.