People applying for a driver’s licence will simultaneously be given the option to sign a consent form enrolling them as blood donors, under a law passed on Thursday.

On applying for a driver’s licence, a person will also be presented with a form asking for his or her consent to be listed on the blood donor registry. If they do enroll, they will be contacted by authorities to give blood whenever the need arises.

The bill, drafted by Edek MP Andreas Apostolou, passed with a unanimous vote in parliament.

Speaking on the House floor, Apostolou referred to blood banks’ serious shortages during the coronavirus pandemic, at times leading to the postponement of 100 to 120 transfusions a week.

Now is the time, he said, to mobilise young people and to preserve the robust tradition in blood donations that Cyprus has.

For his part, Akel deputy Costas Costa congratulated Apostolou for his initiative, adding that the House transport committee fast-tracked the bill and brought it to the plenum “in record time.”

In his own remarks, Diko’s Chrysanthos Savvides said that parliament “has its good moments.”