If you want to help someone out this holiday season help by giving someone a 2nd chance at life - donate blood!!!
I have been a blood donater for a few years and look forward to it every 56 days. Needles do sting a bit but after a few minutes it is over with and you get to eat cookies without the guilty feeling (those on a watching their diet know what I'm talking about ) Donating will not cost you a cent and takes around 45 minutes (with the screening, prep work, actual donation, and then snack time )
I know that not everyone is elgible to give, but I once saw a stat that in the USA less then 10% of elgible donars will donate blood
I give blood because it is a easy way to help others and in life you never know- I may find myself or a loved one on the operating table needing donations and I hope that there will be supply available.
If you can please take the time to donate- I know around here there have been numorus blood drives already this winter. My next donation is on Thursday
Here are some facts that are from: 50 Quick Facts | Give Life | American Red Cross
Facts about blood needs
1. Every two seconds someone in the U.S. Needs blood
2. More than 38,000 blood donations are needed every day
3. One out of every 10 people admitted in a hospital needs blood
4. Total blood transfusions in a given year: 14 million (2001)
5. The average red blood cell transfusion is approximately 3 pints
6. The blood type most often requested by hospitals is Type O
7. The blood used in an emergency is already on the shelves before the event occurs
8. Sickle cell disease affects more than 80,000 people in the U.S., 98% of whom are African American. Sickle cell patients can require frequent blood transfusions throughout their lives
9. More than 1 million new people are diagnosed with cancer each year. Many of them will need blood, sometimes daily, during their chemotherapy treatment.
10. A single car accident victim can require as many as 100 units of blood. See more facts on blood needs for various medical treatments
Facts about eligibility
11. You must be at least 17 years old, weigh more than 110 pounds, and be in good general health to donate (note: eligibility requirements may vary in some states and blood centers)
12. A healthy donor may donate red blood cells every 56 days
13. A healthy donor may donate platelets as few as 3 days apart, but a maximum of 24 times a year
Facts about the blood supply
14. The number of blood donations collected in the U.S. In a year: 15 million (2001)
15. The number of blood donors in the U.S. In a year: 8 million (2001)
16. The number of patients who receive blood in the U.S. In a year: 4.9 million (2001)
17. The volume of blood transfused to patients is increasing at the rate of 6% per year (2001)
18. The demand for blood transfusions is growing faster than donations
19. Less than 38% of the U.S. Population is eligible to donate blood
20. Blood cannot be manufactured — it can only come from generous donors
21. Shortages of all blood types usually occur during the summer and winter holidays
Facts about the blood donation process
22. Donating blood is a safe process. A sterile needle is used only once for each donor and then discarded
23. Blood donation is a simple four-step process: registration and medical history, mini-physical, donation, and refreshments
24. Every blood donor is given a mini-physical, checking the donor's temperature, blood pressure, pulse and hematocrit level (red blood cells count) to ensure it is safe for him or her to give blood
25. The actual blood donation typically takes less than 10-12 minutes. The entire process, from the time you arrive to the time you leave, takes about an hour
26. The average adult has about 10 to 12 pints of blood in his body. Roughly 1 pint is given during a donation
27. All donated blood is tested for HIV, Hepatitis B and C, syphilis and other infectious diseases, before it can be released to hospitals
28. Information you give to the American Red Cross during the donation process is strictly confidential. It may not be released without your permission except as directed by law
Facts about blood and its components
29. Whole blood can be processed into red cells, platelets, plasma, and cryoprecipitate. The total number of units of all of these components transfused in a year is 29 million (2001)
30. It is possible to donate specifically only platelets or plasma. This process is called apheresis
31. Most donated red blood cells must be used within 42 days of collection
32. Donated platelets must be used within 5 days of collection — new donations are constantly needed
33. Healthy bone marrow makes a constant supply of red cells, plasma and platelets. The body will replenish the elements given during a blood donation - some in a matter of hours, and others in a matter of weeks
Facts about donors
34. The #1 reason donors say they give blood is because they "want to help others"
35. Two most common reasons cited by people who don't give blood are: "Never thought about it" and "I don't like needles"
36. One donation can help save the lives of up to 3 people
37. If you began donating blood at age 17 and donated every 56 days until you reached 76, you would have donated 48 gallons of blood, potentially helping save over 1,000 lives!
38. Red Cross donors are 50% male, 50% female
39. The American Red Cross accepts blood donations only from voluntary donors
40. Among Red Cross donors in a given year, 18% donate occasionally, 38% are first time donors, and 43% are repeat and loyal donors
41. People with O- type blood are universal donors. Their blood can be given to people of all blood types. Only 7% of people in the U.S. Have O- blood type
42. Type O- blood is often used in emergencies before the patient's blood type is known, and with newborns who need blood.
43. 45% of people in the U.S. Have type O (+/-) blood. This percentage is higher among Hispanics — 57%, and among African Americans — 51%
44. People with AB+ type blood are universal donors of plasma, the liquid portion of blood. AB+ plasma is often used in emergencies, for newborns and for patients requiring massive transfusions
Facts about the American Red Cross
45. The American Red Cross blood program started in 1940, under the leadership of Dr. Charles Drew
46. The American Red Cross supplies approximately 45% of the nation's blood supply
47. The Red Cross provides blood for patients in nearly 3,000 hospitals across the U.S.
48. The Red Cross makes blood available to any patient who needs it — patients are not required to find donors to replace the blood they use (a practice common in Europe and some U.S. Blood banks) allowing the patient and their family to focus on recovery
49. 80% of the blood donations given to the Red Cross are collected at mobile blood drives set up at community organizations, companies, high schools, colleges, places of worship or military installations. The remaining 20% are collected at fixed Red Cross donor centers
50. The American Red Cross works with over 50,000 sponsors each year to hold more than 120,000 blood drives, providing convenient locations for people to give blood