By Laura Kemp • 24 December 2021 • 18:00
A mother has urged people to donate blood this Christmas after her premature baby was saved with 14 transfusions, amid warnings that the health pandemic is causing more donors than ever to cancel their appointments.
Kimberly Byers from St Neots in Cambridgeshire made the plea for more donors when she returned to give blood exactly six months after the birth of her son Rory.
Rory was born in June at just 24 weeks, in the time since his birth he has needed 14 blood transfusions to save his life. The tiny baby is still being looked after by doctors at Rosie Hospital in Cambridge.
As soon as she was able and permitted, Ms Byers took the first opportunity she could to give back by giving blood.
“Because of 14 different people who gave blood to save my baby boy’s life, I just needed to come at the first opportunity,” she said.
“Without people giving blood, my boy wouldn’t be here today. My own child would not be here so I needed to give it back so that I can help someone else in that situation.”
A record 1,650 appointments to give blood were cancelled across East Anglia in the first week of December with the cause, according to health bosses, being Covid and winter flu pressures.
Donor centre manager Alan Wakeman said: “It’s generally due to ill health at the moment – colds, flus and people having coronavirus, so we constantly need to make sure we can supply what hospitals need.”
He said giving blood was “probably the easiest thing to do to save a life.”
“The process has been really easy – it was my first time doing it and I didn’t feel any pain at all,” Ms Byers added.
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Originally from UK, Laura is based in Axarquia and is a writer for the Euro Weekly News covering news and features.
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