BURTON has fewer people signed up to the bone marrow donor register than all of its surrounding areas, according to new statistics.
The figures released by Anthony Nolan, a UK blood cancer charity, show there are currently 508 people from Burton on the register, compared to more than 600 in the mid-Derby area.
Burton is currently ranked 515th out of 650 areas in the UK for donors.
Bone marrow transplants are used to help patients suffering from lymphoma, anaemia and leukaemia.
Burton resident Katherine Sinfield, 33, of Balfour Street, was diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukaemia last April and received a transplant to cure her of the condition at the end of October.
Katherine writes a daily diary of her experiences with leukaemia for the Mail as a way of raising awareness and helping to increase potential blood and bone marrow donors.
Katherine’s husband, Steve Sinfield, said: “It’s very worrying that only one in three people actually find a matching donor and we were initially quite worried about finding a donor for Katherine.
“Thankfully Anthony Nolan found a match in Germany and Katherine is now seven months post-transplant and is in remission.
“However, we were both quite shocked with these Anthony Nolan figures as we expected Burton to be much higher up the table.
“Given the size of the constituency, its population and the Mail’s ‘Take Five Minutes’ campaign, we expected far more people to be on the donor register.
“Katherine and I now plan to come up with a range of initiatives to help change this and put Burton on the donor map.”
Ann O’Leary, head of register development at Anthony Nolan, said: “Two-thirds of patients will not find a matching donor from within their families and instead they turn to Anthony Nolan to find them an unrelated donor.
“Donating stem cells to save the life of a stranger is a remarkably selfless act.
“We urgently need to recruit donors from all over the UK so we can give people with blood cancer the best possible hope of a cure.”
People aged 16 to 30 can join the Anthony Nolan bone marrow register just by filling in an online form and providing a saliva sample.
View the full leaderboard of donor numbers per constituency here: http://www.anthonynolan.org/superhero