Want to Make a Difference? Donate Blood

donating blood

In honor of National Blood Donor Month, the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) wants you to consider making a blood donation. Washington State is currently experiencing a critical need for blood. But the shortage extends to the nation at large: The American Red Cross announced last year that we are experiencing a “blood crisis,” with the worst blood shortage in more than a decade. 

Nationally, every two seconds a person needs blood. The daily need is for 29,000 units of red blood cells, 5,000 units of platelets, and 6.500 units of plasma.

Jennifer Hawkins, Regional Director for Vitalant Northwest, summarized the problem: “New blood donors are needed every day to replace those who can no longer donate. However, blood centers are seeing fewer people step forward to roll up their sleeves.” 

Donated blood isn’t ready immediately to go into the system. The CEO of BloodworksNW, Cruit Bailey explained that “The blood used in emergency situations is usually collected a week to ten days in advance. A community has to be ready for the next crisis situation.”  

The only requirements for donors are that they be at least 18 and weigh at least 110 pounds. However, 16 and 17 year olds can donate as well with signed permission forms.

Ready to donate? Contact any of the following organizations:

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