15 AUG 2017

Local MP urges increased community efforts to cure blood cancer

And celebrates over 1000 potential lifesavers in Maidstone & The Weald...

Helen Grant MP has joined with the Anthony Nolan charity to thank 1018 people in Maidstone & The Weald who have registered as stem cell donors. The figure places the constituency well into the top half of the UK (255 out of 650) in terms of the number of potential lifesavers registered in the area.

Helen said: "I am very proud that my constituency has such a significant number of registered donors, people 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 want to strongly encourage more people from Maidstone & The Weald, particularly men aged 16-30 and people from black, Asian and ethnic minority backgrounds (BAME), to register as stem cell donors and make sure that a match is available for everyone in need of a transplant. Only 60% of transplant recipients receive the best match. This drops dramatically to around 20% (one in five of transplant recipients) if you're from a BAME background. I really hope that more people will be inspired to sign up and show that together, our communities can provide a cure for blood cancer."

Henny Braund, Chief Executive of Anthony Nolan, said: "We're grateful to all the registered donors in Helen's constituency for helping us in our goal of saving and improving the lives of people with blood cancer and blood disorders. Anthony Nolan's pioneering research, dedicated nurses and patient-focused services mean we have increased the support patients receive at every stage of their transplant journey – but without the contribution of selfless donors, our vital work would be impossible."

The figures come from Anthony Nolan's 'Communities versus Blood Cancer' campaign, which celebrates the people who have already registered as donors and raises awareness of the shortage of donors that still exists.

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