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This is where you can donate blood in East Lancashire

BLOOD DONATION rules changed this week meaning more gay and bisexual men will be allowed to donate blood, platelets and plasma after “historic” new rules came into effect this week.

The new rule means that donors in England, Scotland and Wales will no longer be asked if they are a man who has had sex with another man, NHS Blood and Transplant said.

Instead, any individual who attends to give blood regardless of gender will be asked if they have had sex and, if so, about recent sexual behaviours, it added.

Under the changes people can donate if they have had the same sexual partner for the last three months, or if they have a new sexual partner with whom they have not had anal sex and there is no known recent exposure to a sexually transmitted infection (STI) or recent use of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) or post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP).

Anyone who has had anal sex with a new partner or with multiple partners in the last three months will be not be able to give blood but may be eligible in the future

If you are looking to donate blood but aren’t sure where to start looking for donation centres, we have rounded up some of the blood donations centres you can visit in East Lancashire.

How can I register to become a blood donor?

Before you can give blood you will need to answer some questions first to check if you are eligible for donations.

Here, you will have to input your age, weight, transfusion history and other questions about your medical health.

How does the donation process work?

According to blood.co.uk, the whole process takes around an hour.

You will be given 500ml of fluid before you give blood.

Remember to bring your donor health check form with you and staff at the clinic will give you a health screen prior to donations.

They will examine your arm and place a cuff on your arm to maintain a small amount of pressure during donation.

Staff then examine your arm to find a suitable vein and clean it with an antiseptic sponge.

  1. They will then insert the needle which will collect in a bag with your unique donor number- you should not feel any discomfort or pain.
  2. A scale weighs the blood and stops when you have donated 470ml (or just under a pint). This usually takes between 5-10 minutes.
  3. The needle will be removed and a sterile dressing applied to your arm

Rules have changed slightly due to coronavirus restrictions.

You must now wait seven days after getting vaccinated- you can donate on the 8th day.

However, if you had side effects from the vaccine you are advised to wait 28 days from your recovery.

You must also wear a face covering throughout the donation process.

Where can I donate blood in East Lancashire?

 The following locations were found using my.blood.co.uk’s session finder.

They will be collecting blood donations right now or at some point in the near future.

  • Blackburn Rovers Football Club, Ewood Park, Nuttall Street, Blackburn BB24JF
  • Blackburn Fire Station, Bryom Street, Blackburn BB2 2LE
  • Crow Wood Hotel, Holme Road, Burnley, BB12 0RT
  • Hyndburn Leisure Centre, Henry Street, Church, Accrington, BB5 4EP
  • West Bradford Village Hall, Grindleton Road, West Bradford, Clitheroe, BB7 4TE
  • Praire Sports Village, Windermere Avenue, Burnley, BB102FU

You can book your own blood donation appointment by visiting their website: https://my.blood.co.uk/

Will you be donating blood after the ‘historic’ rule change? Send your story to sarah.mcgee@newsquest.co.uk