In recent months, blood drives have increased in importance and the need is higher than ever. Hurricane Sandy recently forced the cancellation of over 300 blood drives in 14 states, according to a statement by the Red Cross organization in October. For East Coast organizations, this means a loss of over 9,000 blood and platelet donations.
Realizing the Need
After such a tragedy strikes, it is often that a person is compelled to offer what they can to help – a blood donation is just one way to make a difference in the lives of others. These blood donations would help those experiencing tragedy throughout our area – leaving a big impact and sense of togetherness on our community.
Journey of a Blood Donation
Each blood donation is important to the collecting organization. While being handled with the best care possible, your blood travels through many stages from arm to arm.
- The donation
- After a registration and mini-physical to check blood pressure, temperature and hemoglobin, you are cleared to donate! You will give about one pint of blood and several test tubes of blood, all tracked by a unique bar code to be used during processing, testing, storage and transportation.
- While the test tubes are sent for testing, the blood gets spun in centrifuges to separate the red cells, platelets and plasma.
- Test tubes holding your blood are tested for blood type and infectious diseases. If a disease is found in the blood, the donor is notified confidentially. It is important to note that blood donors and the results of the blood they donate are held confidentially.
- Red cells, platelets and plasma are stored appropriately, each having their own shelf life and temperature requirements.
- Blood donation sites work tirelessly with local hospitals to guarantee each location has an adequate supply of blood on hand at all times.
Each stage of blood donation is vitally important for the survival of millions of people each year who depend on blood transfusions. The blood drive recently held at Globe University will potentially save up to 100 lives!
Thank you to all those that donated blood yesterday at Globe University. You have truly made a difference in the lives of others.