World Blood Donation Day is celebrated on 14th June of every year across the globe. It is commemorated with the objective to spread awareness about the necessity for safe blood donation and secure storage of blood products. It also seeks to empower blood donation organisations and NGOs to strengthen their reach among the masses through campaigns. The theme for World Blood Donor Day varies every year. The theme for this year is “Give blood and keep the world beating”.
World Blood Donor Day History & Significance
Commemorated on 14th June annually, the day aims at raising awareness about the importance of a safe blood donation and storage process for blood products. It extends support to blood donor organisations and and other NGOs, helping them to expand their network through blood donor programmes and campaigns. The day has also been created to support blood transfusion services. It is also celebrated as a mark of gratitude to blood donors for their participation in the noble act. The World Blood Donor Day owes its origin to the World Health Organization (WHO), which believes that blood donation and sufficient reserves of blood is at the core of healthcare services.
7 Objectives Behind Celebrating International Blood Donor Day
- Create awareness that the act of blood donation benefits communities across the world.
- Take the opportunity to thank blood donors and convince those who are yet to do so about the necessity of donating blood.
- Support and promote national blood donor programmes across the globe and eliminate dependence on a family member and paid blood donation as the only sources for blood.
- Promote the initiative of Club 25 approach to encourage global citizens to participate in voluntary blood donation, while ensuring timely availability of blood and its safe storage.
- Promote the cause of donating blood on an unpaid basis.
- Maintain adequate blood supply for patients requiring transfusion through the year.
- Ensure a safe process during blood donation, so that donors don’t get infected with diseases.
5 World Blood Donor Day Facts You May Be Curious To Know About
- The global campaign for World Blood Donor Day is organised and managed by the World Health Organization (WHO).
- The day is celebrated on the same day as the birth of the scientist, Karl Landsteiner, who discovered blood groups, for which he was awarded the Nobel Prize.
- The day holds significance in healthcare because blood cannot be technologically manufactured.
- You may not be eligible for donating blood if you have common health conditions, cough and cold, infection, sore throat, or indigestion, among others.
- Blood donation has a positive effect, physically and mentally. It generates a feel-good factor for being able to save lives, reduces feelings of isolation, boosts overall health, manages stress, and a lot more.
3 Blood Donation Benefits That Are Worth Noting
1. Includes Complementary Health Screening
To ensure you are eligible to donate your blood, you are likely to undergo a health screening that is free of cost. The test is conducted to check whether you can be allowed to donate blood. In case the test results indicate that you have a health condition like high blood pressure or even a common cold, you wouldn’t be allowed to donate your blood. You will also be screened for infectious diseases that you may be unaware of. Not just that, checking your blood group is also a part of the process before you’re given a go-ahead.
2. Reduces Risk Of Heart Attack
Blood donation benefits go beyond reduced risk of heart diseases. You may perhaps be surprised to know that blood donation is closely linked to a reduced risk of cardiovascular diseases. Donating blood helps in lowering certain parameters that are high when you have a high haemoglobin. This is closely associated with heart attacks, blood clots, and stroke. This is more common among men than women.
3. Live Longer
Half a litre of blood can save up to 3 lives. Apart from contributing to the nobel cause of saving patients from life-threatening health conditions, it adds to the well-being of the donor too. It reduces the risk of depression, apart from manifesting through various other health outcomes like a longer, happier life.
4 Myths & Facts Of Blood Donation That You Must Be Aware Of:
Myth 1: Blood Donation Is Painful
Reality: One of the most common myths that make people fear blood donation is that the process is painful. However, truth be told, it hurts no more than a slight pinch. It is usually over even before you feel the syringe being injected.
Myth 2: Blood Donation Leads To Anaemia
Reality: If you believe this, you are far off from reality. Only half a litre of blood is drawn from blood donors and it takes your body to make up for it within 48 hours.
Myth 3: It Is Unsafe For Your Health
Reality: Donating blood has no adverse effects on your health, in fact contrary to popular belief, it controls the risk of heart diseases and also boosts reduces stress and other symptoms of depression.
Myth 4: You Need To Rest For A Day
Reality: No, you don’t. You can go about with your life as usual and there is absolutely no need for you to take rest for an entire day.
12 Things You Should Know If You Want To Donate Your Blood
- According to the National Blood Transfusion Council, males as well as females can donate half a litre of blood at a time.
- Wondering how much blood can you donate? Here’s your answer. Men can donate blood once every 3 months, while women can do so once every 4 months.
- Half a litre of blood, termed as 1 unit of blood, can be used for up to 3 patients, depending on the quantity of blood he/she needs.
- Blood donation is restricted to healthy individuals between the ages of 18 and 65.
- You should be at least 50 kg to be eligible for it.
- Individuals with common flu, cough and cold, sore throat, other infections, and indigestion are not allowed to donate blood.
- It is generally advised that you avoid donating blood for 6 months if you have just got a piercing or a tattoo, so that you do not spread infections (if any) to those in need of blood.
- It should also keep away from donating your blood for a day in case you have just undergone a minor dental procedure. Wait for a month, if major work has been done on your teeth.
- Don’t donate blood if you’ve recently travelled to a place where mosquito-borne infections are common like malaria, chikungunya, and dengue.
- Individuals who have engaged in unsafe sex in the last 1 year.
- Individuals who have injected recreational drugs or have tested positive for HIV are also barred from donating blood.
- Women who are pregnant or are lactating should also not donate blood. You can do so 3 months after your baby has been sufficiently weaned off breastfeeding.
For those who are scared of donating blood because of the thought of a syringe being injected into them or as a result of the various myths that do the rounds, we have just given you reasons to eliminate fear from your mind. The above-mentioned things you need to know to prepare for donating blood and the benefits of doing the same offer you enough cues about why all healthy adults should donate blood, so there’s no shortage of blood in blood banks. Imagine the noble cause you’ll be doing to those who are in need and go ahead with being a volunteer at a reliable place in honour of International Blood Donation Day.
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