Mid-Scotland and Fife MSP, Murdo Fraser, has welcomed statistics from the Anthony Nolan charity which has shown that there are nearly 10,000 people registered to donate stem cells in Perth and Kinross, Fife, Stirling and Clackmannanshire.
This September is Blood Cancer Awareness month and these figures were revealed to Murdo during an event in the Scottish Parliament.
In total, more than 700,000 people in the UK are on the Anthony Nolan register, any of whom could be a match for someone with blood cancer and asked to donate their stem cells to give a patient a second chance of life.
Now, Murdo is encouraging more people from Perth and Kinross, Fife, Stirling and Clackmannanshire to register as stem cell donors and make sure that a match is available for everyone in need of a transplant. While anyone on the register could be a match for someone with blood cancer, men aged 16-30 are most likely to be asked to donate. They provide more than 50% of donations yet make up just 16% of the register. There is also a shortage of donors from non-white and mixed-race backgrounds.
Commenting Murdo Fraser MSP said:
“I am very proud that there are nearly 10,000 donors in Mid-Scotland and Fife who have selflessly volunteered to give someone a second chance at life. Donating stem cells is straightforward but it could make an enormous difference to someone with no other chance of a cure.
“I strongly hope that more people from Perth and Kinross, Fife, Stirling and Clackmannanshire will be inspired to sign up and show that we can provide a cure for blood cancer.”
Henny Braund, Chief Executive of Anthony Nolan, said:
“Since 1974 thousands of caring, selfless people have joined the Anthony Nolan register and thousands of lives have been saved as a result.
“This Blood Cancer Awareness Month residents can be proud of all the lifesavers in your community. It’s wonderful to have the support of nearly 10,000 people in Mid-Scotland and Fife in achieving our goal of saving and improving the lives of people with blood cancer and blood disorders.”