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BHB celebrates six retiring blood donors

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Bermuda Hospitals Board has recognised six retiring donors who together have given more than 240 pints of blood over three decades.

“We want to thank six dedicated blood donors today who have collectively donated 244 pints of blood,” consultant haematologist Eyitayo Fakunle said.

“People may not realise that there is a retirement age for blood donors, which means we lose valuable and dedicated donors every year.

“The people we are recognising today have come regularly over many years and even decades.

“They have saved so many lives, and made many more better as donations are used to help people manage conditions such as sickle cell anaemia and cancer, as well as life or death situations.”

The celebrated donors included James Burnett-Herkes, who made 50 donations over 33 years, Alfred John Wight, who donated blood 92 times in 18 years, and Veronica Chameau, who made 26 donations over 16 years. Virginia Olander also donated blood 21 times in eight years, Michael Tucker made 30 donations over 11 years and Edward Wicks gave blood 15 times in five years.

But Dr Fakunle also reiterated the need for new donors to give blood.

“Bermuda's blood supplies are made up of 100% voluntary donations from residents. We do not import blood.

“The lives of all of us in Bermuda are in the hands of a very select group of about 1,000 giving, caring and dedicated donors.

“It is like a lake that we all rely on — if it is not replenished, our local blood supplies will dry up, putting us all at risk.

He called on the next generation to “put their hands up and share a gift only they can give”.

“It may be your loved one, your friend or even you who needs blood next.

“It only takes about 30 minutes to donate, but those 30 minutes, for someone on our island, could mean the difference between life and death.”

• For more information on how to become a blood donor, visit the BHB website here.

• For more information on the blood donor criteria, see the fact sheet under “related media”.

Celebrating the gift of life: From left, blood donor nurse Lucy Correira, BHB CEO Venetta Symonds, retiring donor Veronica Chameau, Clyde Wilson, the Chief of Pathology, retiring donor Alfred John Wright, consultant haematologist Eyitayo Fakunle and pathology manager Kathy Stephens (Photograph supplied)

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Published June 16, 2016 at 3:16 pm (Updated June 16, 2016 at 3:16 pm)

BHB celebrates six retiring blood donors

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