Blood and Platelet Donation

MacRumors encourages blood and platelet donation for a simple reason: it saves lives. This page summarizes information for potential donors. For discussion of all aspects of blood and platelet donations (procedures, the need for donations, eligibility requirements, national differences, news, and controversies) see the MacRumors forums. Not everyone is eligible to donate. If you are not eligible yourself we ask that you help us spread the word and get other people to donate. There's no gift you can give that's more valuable and more appreciated than the gift of life to someone in need.

Team MacRumors

If you donate blood, platelets, or plasma during the month of May, please post about it in our latest Blood Drive thread.

Each time you donate from June to the next April, visit the MacRumors 2020-2021 Team Page, click PLEDGE TO GIVE BLOOD, and fill in your information. It's that easy!

sleevesup.redcrossblood.org/campaign/macrumors-blood-drive-2020-2021/

Enter your MacRumors user name as your First Name and @ macrumors as your Last Name. In the Comments field, tell us what type of donation and how many units, e.g., 1 unit of whole blood, 2 units of platelets, etc. We'll include you in next May's MacRumors Blood Drive Honor Roll.

Why blood and platelet donations are so important

About 1 in 3 people will need blood or platelets sometime during their lives. Over 80% of people will need a transfusion by age 75. Someone somewhere needs blood every few seconds. It could even turn out to be you!

Blood and platelets can't be manufactured. They come only from people. Donated blood and platelets save the lives of patients who are injured, undergoing surgery, or have diseases that cause low blood counts. Their lives depend on the generosity of other people. By donating you can save someone's child, sibling, spouse, parent, grandparent, or friend.

One hour of your time can save three lives! The more you donate, the more lives you can save.

38% of Americans are eligible to donate blood, but fewer than 4% actually do. Similar problems affect the U.K. and other countries. Blood donations are critical in every cultural community. More lives would be saved if more people donated and fewer people found excuses not to.

General information

Donation Procedure

Donation procedures vary by donation center and by national laws and customs, but here's a typical overview:

When you arrive, you'll be asked to read a number of leaflets and fill in a donor health questionnaire. The results of this could lead to a confidential discussion with a nurse.

Your temperature and blood pressure are checked. A tiny drop of blood is taken from your fingertip, which allows the nurses to check your hemoglobin or hematocrit level to ensure that giving blood won't make you anemic. If your level is within tolerance, you will be able to donate blood. You will probably donate about 1 pint or 470ml of blood. This amount of blood is quickly replaced by your body. Some people can give double red cell donations.

Once you have given blood, you should have a short rest and will be given some refreshments such as a drink and cookies or biscuits. Giving blood shouldn't take more than an hour.

Most of the time there's no bruising at all, and if you get a bandage or plaster you can take it off in a few hours. If your arm does bruise around the needle entry point, this is perfectly normal and will subside.

Where to donate in your country

Eligibility and procedures vary by country. The need is universal.

To find a donation center for your country, refer to the list at Be The 1 or use the links below.

Other Countries

If you know links to the appropriate organizations in other countries, please let us know.

Platelet donations

Your body replaces platelets quickly so you can donate more often and save more lives. Leukemia patients are especially in need of platelets.

Plasma donation

Convalescent plasma donations

During the coronavirus pandemic, trials are underway to find out if patients with the most serious COVID-19 cases can be helped by transfusions of plasma from people who have fully recovered from COVID-19. The theory is that recovered patients have created antibodies to the disease in their plasma, and that these antibodies will attack the virus in a transfused patient.

To participate, you must meet additional eligibility requirements and you must donate at a center that is collecting convalescent plasma to participate in the trials.

 

Eligibility

Standard donor eligibility is based on age, weight, health, medications, medical conditions, and factors that affect blood safety. The details vary by country. In the U.S. the American Red Cross and America's Blood Centers follows guidelines set by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). These guidelines have been controversial because of deferrals on blood donations by sexually active gay men, reduced in December 2015 from a lifetime deferral. See MSM blood donor controversy for the status by country and more about the controversy. Temporary reductions were made to some deferral time periods during the coronavirus pandemic.

MacRumors encourages people to donate blood, platelets, or plasma if they are eligible, and if not to help publicize the need for donations and encourage and support those who are eligible. MacRumors does not take positions on political or social issues but does encourage people to let authorities know what they think.

See Also

MacRumors Blood Drives

Organ, Tissue, and Bone Marrow Donation

Forum Threads

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