More women can donate plasma as new machine is installed - The Solihull Observer

More women can donate plasma as new machine is installed

Solihull Editorial 17th Aug, 2022   0

MORE WOMEN can donate blood plasma after Birmingham’s centre upgraded its machine.

Up until now, the number of female donors has been severely restricted as the previous donation machines operated to minimum height and weight criteria that ruled most women out.

However following more up to date evidence the new machines allow for a new height and weight criteria meaning the majority of women can now donate plasma.

The nine machines can take donations from women who are above 5ft 4ins tall and weigh 9stone can.

The new machines are also designed solely for plasma donation, which gives them more advantages.

NHS Blood and Transplant claim donors said the new machines are more comfortable and faster, with each donation taking about 35 minutes instead of 45 minutes.

The plasma will be used to make immunoglobulin, an antibody-rich medicine which strengthens or stabilises the immune system of people with rare disorders.

Mark Bailey, Birmingham Plasma Donor Centre manager, said: “Our new plasma donation machines are female friendly, enabling almost twice as many women to save lives by giving plasma.

“We know some women were disappointed because we had to turn them away before. Now, more people than ever can donate.

“Please register to donate plasma – you have a medicine in you which will save lives.”

Each year, around 1,300 people from the West Midlands are treated with immunoglobulin, for disorders such as Primary Immunodeficiency, Guillain–Barré syndrome, and autoimmune haemolytic anaemia.

England relied on imported immunoglobulin for more than 20 years as a precaution against vCJD but the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) said last year that UK plasma donation can again be used for immunoglobulins.

To register to donate plasma visit

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