MP backs charity’s calls for more bone-marrow donors

Wansbeck MP Ian Lavery has urged people to sign up to potentially save a life.

The MP is backing a campaign from the Anthony Nolan charity to encourage more bone-marrow or stem-cell donors to come forward and offer to save the life of a stranger fighting blood cancer.

There are 462 people in the Wansbeck constituency who have joined the charity’s register, but the average number of potential donors in Parliamentary constituencies is 819.

The Anthony Nolan organisation formed the world’s first bone-marrow register 40 years ago, matching the remarkable people willing to donate bone marrow or stem cells to patients in desperate need of a transplant.

Two-thirds of patients in the UK will not find a suitable match within their families so turn to the charity to find a suitable non-related donor.

However, at present, the scheme can only find a perfect match for 60 per cent of people needing a transplant, so it urgently needs more potential donors to sign up.

Mr Lavery said: “It’s fantastic to be told that there’s so many heroic and selfless people from my Wansbeck constituency prepared to become a donor.

“However, I hope that more will be inspired to become potential life-savers for people in desperate need of their help.”

Anthony Nolan Head of Register Ann O’Leary said that donating is a simple process.

She said: “Donating is an incredibly selfless thing to do and will give someone with blood cancer the best possible chance of survival.

“What many people don’t realise, however, is that it is also surprisingly simple.”

To join the register, potential donors must be aged between 16 and 30 and be in general good health.

Overall, more than 540,000 people are currently registered with the charity.

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