Fears over Olympics blood transport delays

by Jessica MCILHINNEY on January 17, 2012

The transportation of blood to hospitals across London might be affected due to Olympic transport restrictions, according to a UK delivery firm.

Increased congestion and inconvenient restrictions on access, delivery times, and parking times could end up causing delays, said TNT Express, which supplies around a third of 11,7000 red blood cells units that are sent to 41 London hospitals every week.

Transport for London insists that any emergency transportation of vital organs is done by already-used blue-light vehicles in an attempt to minimise delays. During the London games, blue-light vehicles are to be allowed the right to travel in the 35 mph Games Lanes that are reserved for athletes, VIPs, the media, officials, and sponsors, throughout the Olympics in order to guarantee that events run smoothly.

NHSBT, the NHS Blood and Transplant organisation- which is currently responsible for all supplies of blood, organs or tissues across England and the north of Wales - said that it has been considering how to eliminate any risks that are posed by additional Olympics congestion that is a near-certainty.

A spokeswoman from NHSBT spoke to the press and told them that routine deliveries might be moved to nighttime hours and hospitals will be worked with closely while trying to reduce the ongoing demand for deliveries. NHSBT also fears that blood stocks might be hit by what it called a “perfect storm” as the amount of blood that is usually donated might diminish during such a time as the Olympics being held.

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