Translating research into patient care
5th October 2011 - Fun way to learn about important health issues
A special health day is being held in Keighley to raise awareness of the blood disorder thalassaemia and how it may affect them.
The event has been organised by Airedale Hospital and is being held on Wednesday 26 October, 11am – 3pm at the Sangat Centre, Marlborough Street
Speakers will include: Janet Hall, haemoglobinopathy counsellor from Airedale NHS Foundation Trust; Elaine Miller co-ordinator of UK Thalasaemia Society; Sarah Simpson ante–natal co–ordinator who offers screening in pregnancy at Airedale Hospital and parent Mohammed Rafi who will talk about living with thalasaemia.
This is one of the most common inherited conditions which primarily, but not exclusively, affects people from Africa, Asia, Middle East and the Mediterranean. It is a severe form of inherited anaemia and is often detected during routine blood tests of babies and pregnant women.
People with thalassaemia major need blood transfusions every month for life, along with a variety of other treatments. Children with with thalessaemia are often anaemic and have growth problems. Anyone with the trait would need to carry a card stating that they have been screened and identified.
Everyone is welcome to come along and find out more information to help them understand more about the condition and what support is available.
There will be health stalls provided by range of services including continence, dental, sexual health, family planning, health visitors, practice nurses, chiropody, and speech therapy.
Other attractions will be a classically trained Bangladeshi singer Gitika, a holistic room offering complementary therapies, the local fire service giving a chip pan demonstration, mehndi painting and makeovers. Lunch will also be provided and there will be a crèche.
Janet Hall, haemoglobinopathy counsellor from Airedale NHS Foundation Trust said:
“Our aim is to raise the profile of thalassaemia but also other important health issues during a positive environment where every one can mingle and chat informally with health professionals.
“Many people are simply unaware that they may be a healthy carrier of one of genetic blood disorder which can lead to serious health problems in their children.”
Screening involves just a simple blood test and if a couple are planning to have children it is vital that they know if they are carrying either thalassaemia or sickle cell or. If it is discovered that an unborn baby has one of these blood disorders through screening, it can be monitored and practices put in place to help.