Blood donation is a unique way to give thanks, give back

November 16, 2009
While Thanksgiving signals the start of the holiday season, it also presents a unique opportunity for individuals to give thanks and give back by donating blood.
“Blood donations are among the greatest gifts you can give,” said Rodney Wilson, communications manager for the Central Ohio Blood Services Region of the American Red Cross. “At the American Red Cross, we’re thankful for every person who steps forward to help save lives through the simple act of rolling up their sleeve.”
Blood supplies can dwindle during the holiday season as travel and other activities can make it difficult for some donors to find time to give. And while the supply of blood can tighten, the demand for blood can expand as roadway accidents increase the need for blood to be available on a moment’s notice.
A person seriously injured in a car accident can sometimes need 40 or more units of blood to save their life. Blood, too, is needed daily by people undergoing immediate or ongoing treatments for cancer or other serious diseases like sickle cell disease. And while all blood types are needed, the demand for type O is great since type O blood can be transfused to patients with other blood types like A, B and AB.
“The demand for blood never goes away, even though donors sometimes do,” said Wilson. “Regardless of the season, hospitals and their patients always need blood.”