Four Reasons to Become a Blood Donor

January was declared National Blood Donor Month in December 1969. This observance is meant to honor voluntary blood donors and to encourage more people to give blood if they’re able. As physicians, we see the positive impact that blood donation can and has had for many of our patients, often saving their lives. Because of this, we want to encourage anyone who reads this blog to sign up to become a blood donor – today. Keep scrolling to see some of our top reasons to become a blood donor this month.

Blood Donation is in High Demand

America’s Blood Center’s recently announced that only three percent of the U.S. population donates blood every year. This, compared with the fact that a blood transfusion occurs every two seconds in our country, shows that blood donation is in extremely high demand.

You’re Saving Lives

One donation can help two or more patients in need. The blood can also be separated into more than one blood product, including red blood cells, plasma and platelets. Many of the patients your donation goes to are dealing with life threatening diseases such as cancer, sickle cell and various heart-related issues. By donating blood, which takes just 10 minutes of your time, you could be giving someone their life back

You Can Make Extra Money

According to WalletHacks, you can actually get paid to donate blood plasma. While it takes more time than donating red blood, you can make up to $50 per donation. The FDA has several weight guidelines around donating plasma. We recommend consulting with your physician and reviewing the FDA’s website for more information.

You’re Building Diversity

This year, the Association for Advancement of Blood & Biotherapies (AABB) is spotlighting the fact that communities of color are disproportionately impacted by two inherited blood disorders: sickle cell disease and thalassemia. Individuals with these diseases nearly always have ancestors from Africa, the Middle East and South Asia, and need blood from people who also have ancestors from those areas. If your ancestors come from those regions, when you donate blood, you’re helping to build diversity in the blood donor pool, thus helping out the nearly 100,000 Americans who suffer from sickle cell disease and the more than one million Americans with thalassemia. Check out this document from the AABB for more information and resources.

Learn more about blood donation and National Donor Month here.