January is a difficult month for blood centers to collect blood donations. During the holiday season, everyone is preoccupied with their social and travel schedules, resulting in a lower than usual turnout of donors and a reduced supply in our nation’s blood inventory. It is because of these factors that the AABB, along with America’s Blood Centers and the American Red Cross, has named January as National Blood Donor Month (NBDM) 2008, and we strongly our readers to give blood. This year’s goal, set by the American Red Cross and the American Association of Blood Banks is to collect 1.2 million units during the month of January. To this we say – sounds like a resolution we can all keep!
Each day in the US, approximately 39,000 units of blood are required in hospitals and emergency treatment facilities for patients with cancer and other diseases, for organ transplant recipients, and to help save the lives of accident victims. The goal for us all should be to help ensure that blood is available to patients whenever and wherever it is needed because it is the blood on the shelves that helps saves lives. Maybe even our own.
If you are at least 17 years of age (some states permit younger people to donate with parental consent), weigh at least 110 pounds and meet other donor requirements, you may be eligible to donate blood. Celebrate National Blood Donor Month by donating blood and encouraging others to do so as well. To find out where to donate in your area, go to www.redcross.org