A STORAGE unit based in Brentwood for hospital blood supplies has been earmarked to close.

Plans announced by the blood and transplant section of the NHS could see the stock holding unit, in Crescent Drive, shut as it seeks to save millions of pounds.

The building provides hospitals in Essex, including Broomfield, Chelmsford with supplies of blood when they require it for patients.

Blood kept at the unit will be transferred to sites in Cambridge, Tooting and Colindale, in north London, if the board agrees on the proposals during a meeting to be held on March 22.

The plans include relocating the donor suite at Brentwood to another location in the town, with up to 57 jobs being affected by the changes.

A spokeswoman said: “If approved, the proposal will cause very little disruption for blood donors who donate at the Crescent Drive centre, as the donor suite will move to an alternative site nearby.

“The blood service has an ongoing commitment to deliver savings for investment back into frontline NHS patient care.

“To help keep costs down the new proposal will see the blood stock holding unit at Brentwood close and relocated to other centres across the south east. “We will work with hospitals that could be affected by these proposals to ensure they continue to receive the same quality of service.”

The future of 57 staff will be discussed by the health service with plans focused on deploying as many workers as possible to new locations.