It’s been a daunting task for a long time for the blood banks to meet the ever rising demands of blood in India. Figuratively, the need for blood in India arises every 2 seconds and is a mammoth 5 crore units in all. This makes for a requirement of around 40K blood donations every single day. Obviously, forget meeting the requirements, even coming to terms with these figures isn’t easy.
So, apparently, India is in need of donors all the time, 24×7. However, cliche or preachy it may sound, but donating blood is a moral responsibility, each one of us should take up if not regularly atleast occasionally during blood donation camps in your area or blood donation day or week may be!
Here are a few facts about blood donation to clear off any doubts or queries on the same -
BLOOD & TYPES
You can’t make blood, but what you can do is donate. It forms 7% your body weight.
O -ve donors blood cells can be used by patients of all blood groups, but has a low shelf life, hence is in high demand.
AB positive plasma can also be used by patients of all blood types, and has good shelf life.
Due to the short shelf life of blood components, a constant supply has to be provided, thus increasing the use of auto-transfusion methods.
Platelets need to be used up within 5 days, RBC’s in around 40 days, while plasma can be stored for almost a year, under refrigeration.
Due to a drastic shoot up of cancer cases and patients opting for chemotherapy, the need for blood has also gone up. Even accident cases are in dire need of high quantities of blood.
Blood donation is not only good for others but good for you too because it reduces the risk of heart diseases in men other than glucose and pressure reduction. It also helps patients with iron overload prevent toxic accumulation.
The blood banks, hospitals or social service organizations organize blood donation camps and are involved in associated procedures. From the whole blood donated, red blood cells, plasma, platelets and cryoprecipitate components can be transfused, thus a blood bottle is worth many lives.
Potential blood donors have to undergo physical examination before donating blood. The basic requirements include minimum weight of 50 kg and age of 18 years.
Blood donation is extremely safe and either sterile needles or disposable needles are used for the purpose.
You can donate only 1 unit of red blood cells at a time at an interval of 56 or 112 days and as for platelets only 24 times a year that too only once in 7 days.
If you start donating blood at 18, once every three months by the age of 60 years, you would have saved over 500 lives – being a super hero is sure an extraordinary feat, but you can achieve it buy donating blood regularly, thus saving their lives.
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