National Blood Donor Month
January is National Blood Donor Month — a month that encourages people to think about donating blood. Current statistics state that the need for blood is at an all-time high. Over the course of just one year, 4.5 million Americans will need a complete blood transfusion, and 30 people a minute will need a blood product.
Unfortunately, only about 10% of the people in the U.S who are eligible to donate blood actually do, even though almost 40% of the population is eligible. And that’s why this month is so important. Donating blood is something that saves lives on a daily basis, so anyone and everyone who can donate blood should do so. Not just during this month, but all year long.
The History Of National Blood Donor Month
In 1969, the United States Senate passed Resolution 154—a resolution that asked the U.S President to proclaim January as National Blood Donor Month, which then-President Richard Nixon did on December 31st. It’s been used ever since to raise the public’s attention about the importance of blood donation and to encourage people to give blood if they can.
This month was chosen because the winter season is especially hard on the national blood stores. This is not only due to increased seasonal demand for blood due to accidents but is also due to fewer people donating blood due to seasonal illnesses and bad road conditions. This month allows the Red Cross to replenish their blood stores so they can make sure hospitals are properly stocked.
Facts About Blood Donations
Let’s check out a few blood donation facts before we scoot along to the conclusion of this article.
- A single-car accident victim can require upwards of 100-pints of blood to make it.
- Plasma makes up 55-percent of blood volume.
- Many patients with sickle cell disease need monthly transfusions.
- One in seven people admitted to a hospital needs blood.
Observing National Blood Donor Month
First and foremost, we encourage everyone who is medically able to donate blood to do so during this month. It’s been estimated that over 36,000+ units of red blood cells are needed in the U.S. Type O blood is especially needed because it can be transfused to patients of all blood types, but any type of blood is always needed.
We should all do our part to ensure that blood supplies remain at a level where they can save people’s lives. Regardless of whether a person can donate blood or not, it’s important for everyone to share the word of this week using the hashtag #NationalBloodDonorMonth.