Amid a national blood shortage, just one donation can save multiple lives. Every two seconds, someone in the United States is in need of blood – and just one donation can save up to three lives. June 14 is World Blood Donor Day, and we celebrate those who have given the gift of life and raise awareness of the importance blood donation plays in saving lives. This World Blood Donor Day, Capital Health Plan encourages you to give the gift of life!
Donating blood is essential to helping patients who are battling cancer, who are in need of surgery, or who require a transfusion due to blood loss from traumatic injuries.
Earlier this year the American Red Cross declared a national blood crisis as the country suffers the worst blood shortage in more than a decade. The effects of the pandemic, including cancellations due to illness and staffing shortages, combined with low donor turnout have made it more important than ever to help others by stepping up now to donate blood. The shortage has delayed critical medical treatments and forces doctors to decide who should receive a blood transfusion first and who will have to wait.
There is no substitute or manufactured replacement for blood, so every donation plays a significant role in helping others – especially when over 38,000 blood donations are needed each day. You can give blood as often as every two months, and there are only a few requirements to donate:
- Participate in a medical history check and quick physical
- Be at least 17 years old
- Weigh at least 110 pounds
You can participate in several different kinds of blood donations, from plasma and platelets to red blood cells. Plasma donations are used to care for patients with such life-threatening conditions as cancer or severe burns. These donations are encouraged for those with an AB blood type – the universal donor type. Platelet donations are vital to patients with cancer, traumatic injuries, or chronic diseases, as platelets help create clots to stop from bleeding. Whole blood donations are also a life-saving option, giving away all contents – red cells, plasma, platelets, and white cells – that are necessary to help patients fight cancer, traumatic injuries, and blood disorders.
The American Red Cross has announced a dire need for whole blood and platelet donations to help prevent treatment delays, especially for blood types O positive and O negative. At Capital Health Plan, we work continually to help everyone in our community maintain a healthy life. Donating your blood is a way you can make a positive impact on your community’s collective health – and possibly even save another person’s life.