With the demand for blood donors increases drastically, the emphasis on the importance of rolling up your sleeve becomes a need of the hour! Often, many blood donation centres are forced to halt services due to the frigid weather and many blood donors are unable to donate due to various illnesses. This is why your donation of blood is needed now more than ever!
Blood donation is a voluntary procedure that can help save the lives of others. There are several types of blood donation, which help meet different medical needs. The various forms are:
- Whole blood donation: This is the most common type of blood donation, during which you donate about a pint of whole blood. The blood is then separated into its components — red cells, plasma, platelets.
- Apheresis: During apheresis, you are hooked up to a machine that can collect and separate blood components, including red cells, plasma, platelets, and return unused components back to the donor.
- Platelet donation (plateletpheresis) collects only platelets — the cells that help stop bleeding by clumping and forming plugs (clotting) in blood vessels.
Donated platelets are commonly given to people with leukaemia, people receiving chemotherapy and babies with severe infections.
- Double red cell donation allows you to donate twice the amount of red blood cells than you normally would during a whole blood donation. Red blood cells deliver oxygen to the entire body.
People with a medical need for only red blood cells include those with severe blood loss, such as after an injury or accident, and those who have anaemia with serious symptoms
- Plasma donation (plasmapheresis) collects the liquid portion of the blood (plasma). Plasma helps blood clot and contains proteins and other substances, such as electrolytes, that help the body function normally.
Plasma is commonly given to people with liver conditions, burns and severe bacterial infections in their blood.
In every country, community, and medical centre the need for safe blood is important. It is used in the case of traumatic accidents, in childbirth when necessary, for patients with certain blood disorders, children with anaemia, and patients who are undergoing specific medical procedures. The donation of blood can literally save people’s lives.
So how can you help? If you are eligible to donate blood, donate! Find out your blood type and just give that pint. And commit to donating regularly. Find a local blood drive through the Red Cross or a center. Blood donation is needed all year long to maintain supplies. If you are ineligible give your time! Volunteer at blood drives, urge your family and friends to donate, and tell people why it is so important to give blood. Advocate for the health of donors and the need for safe blood. Or if you are able to, provide resources and space for a blood drive. There is no need for a special reason to donate, you just need to find something that motivates you! Many choose to donate blood because a friend asked them to join in on the good deed, whereas others simply do so because they believe it is the right thing to do. No matter what motivates you, your donation is much needed and greatly appreciated.
Join us in recognizing the Need for Blood Donation! However, The National Blood Donor Day/Month or FHPL is not the only reason why blood in donors are needed. This year, take the pledge to donate blood regularly!
We believe it’s important to be active members of our communities and the world. Donating blood could certainly save the life of people who are in needful situations all across the globe. FHPL would like to encourage you to do your part in giving back to those in need.