By Bejay Browne
AN urgent appeal for blood donations has been launched in Paphos by friends and family of a British expat currently in intensive care, as stocks have run out.
Len Maitland, 77, is currently in the intensive care unit at Paphos general hospital and has already received 10 units of ‘O’ negative blood in the last few days.
His wife, Lil Maitland, a teacher at the International School of Paphos, spoke to the Cyprus Mail on Monday and said: “Len has already had all of the blood in his body replaced as he was haemorrhaging severely and we almost lost him last night.”
The couple live in Peyia in Paphos and Lil said that the haemorrhaging is due to a rare complication of a condition called diverticulitis. Her husband suffered from a similar episode around four years ago, when the public responded well to a similar blood drive.
Savvas Zakos, the head of the blood bank at Paphos General Hospital confirmed that the facility has run out of ‘O’ negative blood.
“This is an ongoing problem as only around 5-6 per cent of people in Paphos are negative, the other 94% are positive.”
On Sunday blood was bought in from both Larnaca and Limassol hospitals in order to replace Len’s lost blood.
“It is difficult to collect ten units of negative blood in one week, and each hospital has only a small amount available,” said Zakos.
Lil said: “Len needs an operation, but ideally, the doctors have told me that he has to be more stable first. Last night they did a small procedure to try and stop the bleeding to give him a few days to stabilise, but they said if there is even a drop of blood later on, they will have to do an emergency operation which is very risky.”
The school teacher appealed to the public to come forward to donate blood which could help to save her husband’s life.
“People who want to help us can go to donate blood at the blood bank at Paphos General Hospital weekdays between 8am- 2pm. They can say that they are responding to the appeal for Len Maitland who is in Intensive Care,” she said.
Paphos General Hospital Blood Bank: – 26803204