National Volunteer Blood Donor Month

According to a 2018 review by the New England Journal of Medicine about 60,000 Americans die from uncontrolled hemorrhage or blood loss.1 Hemorrhage can often be preventable when equipped with proper application of a tourniquet or application of hemostatic agents like OMNI-STAT and CELOX, which can help reduce blood loss and save lives. However, when blood products are needed hospitals rely on donors.

January is National Volunteer Blood Donor Month. According to the Red Cross, every 2 seconds someone in the US needs blood as a result of a traumatic injury, surgery, or a chronic illness.2 According to the American Cancer Society in 2017 an estimated 1.7 million people were diagnosed with cancer,3 many of whom require blood throughout their treatment, sometimes even daily, while undergoing chemotherapy. The American Red Cross estimates that around 6.8 million people donate blood each year2 and although that sounds like a big number, supply does not always meet demand. Only 38% of the population in the U.S can donate and of those, only 10% actually do.2 The Blood Connection, headquartered in Piedmont, SC is the largest independently managed non-profit community blood center in the region. They and the Red Cross estimate that by donating 1 pint of blood, you can save 3 lives.2  Click here to find additional facts about blood supply.

Preparedness is the first step to saving a life, whether it be carrying tourniquets, stocking hemostatic agents, or maintaining adequate blood supply, you can do your part by creating awareness, or if eligible, donating blood this month. To find out if your eligible visit redcrossblood.org and click here to find a donation drive near you. You can also find out about their promotion to win a trip to Super Bowl LIV in Miami by clicking here.  

References:

1. Cannon, J. (2018, January 25) Hemorrhagic Shock. The New England Journal of Medicine, 378, 370-9
2. The American National Red Cross. (n.d.). Blood Needs and Blood Supply. Retrieved Jan 12, 2019, from American Red Cross: https://www.redcrossblood.org/donate-blood/how-to-donate/how-blood-donations-help/blood-needs-blood-supply.html

3. American Cancer Society. (2016). Cancer Facts and Figures, 2016.  http://www.cancer.org/research/cancerfactsstatistics/cancerfactsfigures2016/

 

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