Thursday, 26 November 2009

Videoconference with Paris

The Committee has gone international again, this time with a videoconference with Paris. Frank McAveety (convener), Anne McLaughlin and Robin Harper heard from Dr Gilles Folléa, Leslie Sobaga and Sophie Skotnicki about how France has been promoting and encouraging blood donation (and eventually succeeded) for the best part of the last 10 years. Dr Folléa is one of the top heads of the Etablissement Français du Sang (EFS), the equivalent of the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service.

The videoconference was on the back of petition PE1274 by Andrew Dannet which seeks to introduce a scheme to pay people each time they donate blood and to consider other measures to encourage more people to donate.

We received valuable information based on the French experience which will no doubt assist the Committee's work on the petition. We learned that in France, there are 156 sites where people can donate blood with 85% of these sites being mobile (going from town to town), all this backed up by local and national awareness campaigns pretty much throughout the year. One good idea that they have is that when people donate blood they are asked to make another appointment so that it is not just a one off (men can give blood up to 6 times a year and women up to 4). Donors are then reminded of the appointment by text message.

This was a videoconf which was well worth it and the petition will be back before the Committee in April.

Just to show you how international we really are, la vidéoconference a apporté des éléments neufs et innovateurs qui vont sans nul doute aider le comité dans ses délibérations. L’approche française est certainement un succès et les examples donnés, à la fois simples et pratiques, illustrent une bonne utilisation d’outils informatiques. Par example, lorsque quelqu’un donne du sang, on demande à cette personne de reprendre aussitôt un rendez-vous pour une prochaine fois. Le donneur recevra ensuite un message par texto pour lui rappeler du jour et l’heure du rendez-vous. Simple et efficace!


Clerking team


  1. It was really interesting to hear from them and I'm always in awe of the technology that allows us to do that without having to actually go to Paris. (Like that would be a chore!) It's so useful to be able to question experts in their field in another country, we should do more of it. Plus I LOVED telling folk "sorry, have to dash, am talking to Paris shortly" :-) Seriously it was very useful and something we should definitely do more of. Anne

  2. Absoluitely Anne. I was still boring people at the weekend with 'I was speaking to Paris the other day' (and I had met with a delegation from Vietnam that morning so I was doubly boring!)