Blood bank happy with number of donors

Blood donation rush look back
Blood donation campaign - Pic credit - PSV media

Blood bank Sanquin looks back with satisfaction at the nearly 15,000 donors who came forward after PSV press chief Thijs Slegers, now deceased, issued a donation appeal. “Because of the large number of applications, it took longer before everyone could go,” he said.

Slegers made that appeal in February this year when he announced he was incurably ill. Subsequently, the number of applications exploded at both blood bank Sanquin and Matchis – where people who want to donate stem cells can apply.

Matchis was able to register 10,000 new stem cell donors thanks to the campaign. At Sanquin, some 4,500 blood donors registered. At the blood bank, about 75 to 80 per cent actually become blood donors. The remaining 20 to 25 per cent fail to show up after registering, or are rejected.

Waiting time

“Because of the large number of applications, it did take a bit longer before everyone could come,” Sanquin says. “The inspection capacity is somewhat limited in Eindhoven. As a result, some donors took up to 2.5 months before they could come for testing.” Sanquin expects that 3,600 more blood donors will eventually be added as a result of the former PSV press chief’s initiative.

Great need

Finally, the blood bank reveals that there is a great need for donors. “In the Netherlands, about 400,000 people are blood or plasma donors. Because eventually one in four people will need blood at some point, we are always looking for new donors,” Sanquin says.

“The difference is that blood donors can actually donate quickly and multiple times once they have signed up. Men up to five times a year, women up to three times a year. In the case of stem cell donors, it depends on whether a match is found between patient and donor,” Sanquin said.

Thijs Slegers

Thijs Slegers revealed at the time of the campaign that he was impressed by the number of people who registered with Matchis or Sanquin. Slegers passed away at the end of March.


Translated by: Anitha Sevugan

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