Those with a sharp eye may have noticed a different logo appear on our Facebook page yesterday.
Just like the image to the right, the letters ‘a’ and ‘o’ were removed. This is part of the NZ Blood ‘Missing Type’ campaign. . .  

The ‘Missing Type’ campaign

The Neonatal Trust is pleased to be joining in on NZ Bloods ‘Missing Type’ campaign. Part of an international campaign, New Zealand Blood Service (NZBS) has announced it wants 10,000 New Zealander’s to register to become first-time blood donors. The Service is seeking Kiwis between 16 and 65 years-old, to step up and register to become blood donors.

People rarely think about their blood type – but what if that ‘type’ was to go missing in everyday life?

•    New Zealand Blood Service is looking for 10,000 people to register to become first-time donors
•    A and O blood types are always the most in demand 
•    Today marks the launch of Missing Type the world’s largest blood donor recruitment campaign
•    Leading New Zealand businesses, charities and celebrities are removing A and O from names, brands and logos nationwide in support of Missing Type #MissingType #NZBlood

As part of the campaign NZBS has partnered with some of New Zealand’s leading businesses, charities and celebrities who are all removing their A’s and O’s from names, brands and logos nationwide in support of Missing Type.

The Neonatal Trust has joined in:

Neonatal Trust Facebook image for NZ Blood

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
Neonatal context

We talked to Dr Max Berry, Neonatal Intensive Care Doctor, on the importance of blood for neonatal babies:

“O negative is the ‘universal donor’ blood type. So, when a critically unwell newborn baby needs an emergency blood transfusion this is the blood we use in Delivery Suite to provide that life saving intervention. In this scenario, we don’t have time to test the baby’s own blood type, but we do know that it will be different to their mothers, and that an emergency transfusion with ‘O negative’ blood is safe for the baby. However, O negative is harder to come by than other blood types because less than 10% of people in New Zealand have this blood group. 

When the babies need a ‘routine’ non-emergency transfusion in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) we give them blood that has been carefully matched to suit their exact blood group (i.e., not necessarily O negative) . 

Blood transfusion is a standard part of care for almost all extremely premature babies, so we are completely reliant on the generosity of Kiwi blood donors to keep our NICU babies well.”

As an example of one how important blood is for neonatal babies, the graphic below shows some key statistics for one neonatal journey – nine blood transfusions were required. 

Blood transfusions are a critical part of the care of many babies undergoing intensive care – both premature and also full-term babies with specialist medical and surgical needs. 

Charlottes journey - 9 blood transfusions

 

 

 

NZ Blood logoNZBS National Manager Marketing and Communications, Asuka Burge, says “The idea was based on the understanding that people rarely think about their blood type, but if that ‘type’ was to go missing in everyday life, people would start to pay closer attention”.

“We have been overwhelmed by the response we have had from some of New Zealand’s leading businesses and organisations.  Their support and commitment to this campaign is helping us spread the message across New Zealand.  New and young donors are the key to safeguarding New Zealand’s future blood supply and we want this campaign to encourage more people to find out if they are eligible and register to become a blood donor.”

Currently less than four per cent of eligible New Zealander’s donate blood.  There is no alternative for patients in need of blood or blood products. Put simply, blood donors save lives.    NZBS currently has a database of 110,000 amazing blood donors who last year saved the lives of about 42,000 kiwis. But every year around 28,000 people leave the donor registry.

For more information or to register to become a new blood donor please visit www.nzblood.co.nz/MissingType.

 

About New Zealand Blood Service:

New Zealand Blood Service (NZBS) in a not-for-profit Crown entity responsible for the collection, processing, testing and storage and distribution of all blood and blood products in New Zealand.  

We rely on voluntary and non-remunerated blood donations from individuals around the country in order to provide a constant supply of precious blood and blood products used by our health services to save thousands of lives.

The need for donors is constant – we must collect around 3,000 donations every week nationally and are always working to maintain and grow our register of donors to make this possible. 

Blood Groups
•    This campaign focuses on A and O blood types because they make up the vast majority of New Zealand (85%), which means they’re the blood types that are most in demand.  
•    AB and B blood groups are relatively uncommon which means there is less demand for them.  

Eligibility
•    Donors must meet the donor eligibility criteria to donate blood in NZ.
•    This can be found on the website at www.nzblood.co.nz

Global Missing Type Campaign
•    The campaign – first held in England and North Wales by NHS Blood and Transplant in 2015 – this year brings together 25 blood services from 21 countries covering one billion of the world’s population who are each calling for new donors to ensure blood donation for future generations.