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Is Saving Three Lives on your January To-Do List?

Is Saving Three Lives on your January To-Do List?

Take a quick look at your January to-do list. Chances are there’s no dearth of deadlines and deliverables. Chances are equally good, however, that no entry on your list measures up to this one:

Today, I’m going to save the lives of up to three people.

That’s an impressive day’s work! More impressive still, is the fact that this lifesaving project actually can be completed in less than 15 minutes, because that’s the amount of time it takes to:

Donate blood.

January is National Blood Donor Month, and ATRIO Health Plans is taking this opportunity to encourage all who can to give blood that can then be used for lifesaving transfusions at health facilities nationwide.

An Urgent Need

Many people are wholly unaware that there’s an urgent and ongoing need for blood donations. The facts stand as compelling evidence in support of the lifesaving difference donated blood can make:

  • Some 4-million to 5-million Americans would die annually if they didn’t receive blood transfusions.
  • Every two seconds, someone in America needs blood.
  • Nine out of 10 people will need blood at some point in their lives.
  • One donation can help save the lives of up to three people.
  • U.S. hospitals use about 36,000 units of blood each day; hospitals frequently have less than a two-day supply of blood on hand.
  • To keep pace with demand, more than 41,000 blood donations are needed daily.
  • A single car-accident victim can require as many as 100 pints of blood.
  • Blood can’t be manufactured; it must be donated by human beings.
  • Individuals who have Type O negative blood are particularly encouraged to be donors, because their blood can be transfused to patients of all blood types; only seven percent of the U.S. population has type O negative blood.
  • Demand also is great for individuals with AB positive blood type, because those in this category – which applies to only three percent of the nation's population – are universal plasma donors.
  • If someone began donating blood at age 17, and continued donating every 56 days (which is the allowable waiting period between donations) until he/she reached age 76, this single person potentially would have saved more than 1,000 lives.
  • Even though some 38 percent of Americans are eligible to donate blood, less than 10 percent of those who are eligible actually donate.

A Simple Process

Donating blood is a simple process that can spell the difference between life and death for someone in need.

Step one is determining if you're eligible to donate. General requirements include:

  • You must be 18 or older, although 16- and 17-year-olds can donate if a parent or guardian signs a special form.
  • You must weigh at least 110 pounds.
  • Your overall health must be considered generally good.
  • You must possess valid identification, such as a driver's license or passport.

If you meet the eligibility requirements, the rest is a breeze:

  • Donating blood is a safe process. A sterile needle is used only once for each donor and then discarded.
  • Blood donation is an easy, four-step process: registration, medical history/mini-physical, donation, and refreshments.
  • The actual blood donation typically takes less than 15 minutes. The entire process, from the time you arrive to the time you leave, takes about an hour and 15 minutes.

So, start 2017 outright by potentially saving another human's life. Find out from the

Red Cross where you can donate in your area.

Sources:

http://www.bloodcenters.org/donate-blood/am-i-eligible/

http://www.monster.com/blog/b/5-steps-office-blood-drive-0115

http://nj1015.com/blood-drives-encouraged-at-the-workplace-video/

http://www.redcrossblood.org/learn-about-blood/blood-facts-and-statistics

http://www.redcross.org/take-a-class/organization-training

http://www.psbc.org/programs/drives_organize.htm