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27 July 2022

Celebrating our platelet heroes


With a shelf life of only seven days, platelets are a vital blood component which support many of Scotland's patients.

One of the largest groups to receive 'liquid gold' (nicknamed for its amazing properties and distinctive colour), are cancer and leukaemia patients. Premature babies and emergency admissions also regularly receive platelets.

However, because of their short shelf life and high demand, Scotland needs dedicated donors to give platelets every day of the week.

Jamie receiving his award from Kenneth Keegan

Jamie, Glasgow

Jamie Kerr from Paisley was recently named Community Hero 2022 by Kenneth Keegan Independent Funeral Directors. Just one of the reasons he was nominated was his dedication to giving platelets. Jamie has lots to celebrate this year, reaching an incredible 60 donations in May.  

Jamie, who first gave blood at a session at Anchor Mill Morrisons says, 'Being a platelet donor is my proudest achievement in life.

'Initially, I started giving blood to give back to the special baby care unit at the RAH. My partner and I had a beautiful daughter, Rubi, who was a patient there before she lost her fight for life, receiving both blood transfusions and platelets.' 

We would like to extend a huge congratulations to Jamie who thoroughly deserves this title. He is very committed to platelet donation and always arrives for his appointment with a big smile.

When asked what advice Jamie would give to new donors, he said, 'Give the team a call and they will put you at ease. It’s pain free, honest - and I don’t even like needles!'

Neil receiving his 300th award from Apheresis Nurse Sebastian Rojas

Neil, Edinburgh

Originally a regular blood donor in Corstorphine, in 2013 Neil Provanbegan donating platelets at Edinburgh Donor Centre and has never looked back. In fact, he recently celebrated a milestone of 300 donations - an amazing achievement.

With a large part of Neil's career spent with the Scottish Ambulance Service, he is no stranger to saving lives.

'When I was asked if I could give platelets instead of whole blood, it was an easy decision to make. I was fit and well, and even though I was coming to give more often (roughly every month instead of every 12 weeks), it was something that easily fitted around my shift work with my job.'

Neil continues, 'I'm delighted to still be giving platelets after first becoming a donor about 30 years ago.

'To be helping others, it's just something that is a normal part of my life. The staff are great and I'm well looked after, and it's nice to know a few hours of my time can make such a huge difference to patients.'

500th donation for Derek
Milestone donation for Jim

Derek and Jim, Aberdeen

With a combined total of 900 donations and more than 60 years of giving blood between them, another massive thank you goes to two dedicated Aberdeen donors. Thousands of patients will have had their lives saved or improved by these two kind donors and the staff at the Aberdeen Donor Centre were delighted to recently award both Derek and Jim a token of thanks.

Want to give platelets?

Current blood stock levels across Scotland Saturday 20 August

We aim to retain 6 days of stocks at any time in order to meet the requirements of patients in Scotland.

Learn more about blood types