Something we all have in common is the blood that courses through our veins. It supplies us with oxygen and keeps us breathing. Some people are squeamish about it, others revel in the spilling of it in the horror movies they watch.
What is scary is that at some point in our lives we may all need someone else's blood to help us. The Australian Red Cross Blood Services need us. So, do you have it in you to give some up?
Karl Landsteiner and Alexander S. Wiener went to work early in the 1900's studying, classing and determining the different types, the Rh factor and the antigens that make each type unique. Now a complex test determines if you are A positive , A negative, B positive, B negative, AB positive, AB negative, O positive or O negative. The rarest being the B types, A being the most in demand.
Thank you for being a life saver!
Blood Services came into being after the war in 1945 where they became the only entity to collect and distribute blood, plasma and platelets. By the 1950's there were blood banks in every major city and town, and mobile collections were on the move.
Today in Australian society, according to the blood services website
there are half a million people who donate blood. That is only one in thirty. Yet at some point in time one in three will need blood. With five litres of it we have more than enough to give. And our bodies recreate it within forty eight hours.
Only 1 person in 30 donates blood!
Now that you know, what can you do to help? Why should you donate blood?
Think of it in terms of your family. We all know someone who has had cancer. Do you also know that their blood is affected by chemo, they may need transfusions, their platelets that assist in clotting are messed up by the whole process?
You could save a family member!
The screening process is done at a Red Cross Blood Services center, which involves an appointment, questions, testing your blood. If you are a suitable candidate to donate you receive your donor card in the mail with your blood type on it and you are ready to go.
Now you get to sit in a comfy chair, put your feet up, sleep if you want to or read a book while they draw your blood. Within a short amount of time you are done. You get a free snack and have saved three lives. Not bad for forty minutes work.
In under 40 minutes you can save 3 lives!
If you have given a whole blood donation you don't come back for another three months. And you will become one of the 27000 donations that they require on a weekly basis.
Portions of your blood, platelets and plasma are other components that can be useful. Platelets go to helping cancer patients as well as other people with severe illnesses. These can be donated every two weeks.
We can help cancer patients on the road to recovery!
It does take a bit of effort but it is worth it. It is an easy way to help others, particularly if you're on a budget and can't afford to give money to charities. And, you can class yourself as a life saver.
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