When Freddie was born he had a condition called Transient Abnormal Myelopoesis, and required transfusions of blood and platelets. On at least one occasion the platelets had to be urgently brought up from Birmingham in the night. Our local hospital would have had no choice but to use a taxi firm to collect the blood, and would have had to pay the normal retail rate for the journey. This means that each trip would have cost the NHS somewhere in the region of £200 – £300.
That’s one of the reasons we were so pleased to meet the good people of Shropshire and Staffordshire Blood Bikes (http://www.bloodbikes.org.uk/) at the Staffordshire Police Open Day last Sunday.
Shropshire and Staffordshire Blood Bikes are a volunteer service providing urgent and emergency transportation of blood to NHS foundations across both counties (they will also transport breast milk, human tissue, small pieces of vital surgical equipment, and other urgent medical supplies, if required), thus saving the NHS the cost of using taxis — money which would be better spent on direct patient care. They are a registered charity (Registered Charity Number 1156212).
Another reason we were delighted to meet them is that, although his transfused blood was not biked up the motorway, Freddie does have biking in his blood. Daddy worked in the motorcycle industry for nearly twenty years, and for most of that time had a motorcycle as his ‘Company Car.’