This January, Interim Physicians is joining the American Red Cross to celebrate National Blood Donor Month.
As we kick off the New Year, we're encouraging everyone to roll up their sleeves and give blood in January – and throughout the year! After all, whether you're A+, B-, O+, AB- (or the like), YOU'RE SOMEBODY'S TYPE!
Only 38 percent of the United States population is eligible to donate blood, and less than 10 percent of those eligible actually do. Yet, every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood. Whether it's whole blood, red cells, platelets or plasma, a patient's lifesaving treatment starts with one person's generous donation.
Why should you donate?
According to the American Red Cross, approximately 36,000 units of red blood cells, 7,000 units of platelets, and 10,000 units of plasma are needed daily in the U.S.
However, it's not just victims of serious injuries car crashes, which can require as many as 100 units of blood, or natural disasters that require blood. Many patients who have a major surgical procedure will need a blood transfusion to replace any blood loss during surgery, and certain illnesses, like sickle cell anemia, leukemia or kidney disease, can cause patients to require regular blood transfusions as well.
What can you do to encourage others to donate?
1. Share stories. Sharing real stories from survivors is a great way to show friends and colleagues the direct lifesaving benefits of donating blood - for example, this woman who stated, "If it wasn't for donors, I wouldn't be here today,” after she received 220 blood transfusions! By providing faces and names, you're able to give real-life examples of who these donations are actually going to, and inspire others to give too.
2. Make it easy. Two common reasons people do not donate is: 1) they believe they don't have time, and 2. they don't know where to go. Luckily, anyone can Find a Drive near them by going to the American Red Cross's website and entering their zip code. Once there, you can even select a time that works best for you and schedule an appointment! If you're located near one of our offices, you can click on your location, below, to find a drive near you:
3. Offer incentives. One of the ways Interim Physicians is encouraging our employees to donate blood is by holding a National Blood Donor Month giveaway. After showing proof of donation (either by downloading the Red Cross blood donor app or showing their donor sticker), employees can enter their name into a drawing to win a prize. By rewarding our lucky winner, we're spreading awareness and growing our local blood banks - a win win for all!
Want to learn more?
Check out some of these helpful resources from the American Red Cross before you donate:
- First time donating? No worries.
- Feeling nervous? Ease your fears.
- Unsure what to do before, during, or after your donation? We’ve got you covered.
- Ever wonder what happens to your blood after it’s donated? Follow its journey, here.