Maintaining a regular supply of all blood types is very important to ensure right blood is available for everyone who needs it. To cope up with emergencies & treating the patients need right blood type with adequate supply hence donors are saviors.
AB negative is the rarest of the eight main blood types – just 1% of our donors have it.
Ro subtype, which is often used to treat people with sickle cell disease is both rare & in demand.
Only 2% of donors have it but demand for it is increasing by 10-15% each year.
Where do donations of rare blood come from?
There are three ways rare blood is provided:
- Fresh blood cells from routine donations – this is our preferred option
- Contacting donors with the rare blood types and asking them to donate
- Using frozen rare blood – this is used as a last resort for the rarest blood types. Rare blood can be frozen for up to 30 years and thawed for transfusion when it’s needed
How long does blood last after it’s been donated?
Blood components have a limited shelf life:
- red blood cells can be stored for up to 35 days
- platelets can be stored for up to 7 days
- plasma can be stored for up to 3 years
So organizations should collect what is needed to avoid wasting any donations.
Can I give blood?
There are conditions where you might not be able to give blood, or you may be asked to wait before donating again. Please refer the list of the most common reasons people cannot give blood.
Can I donate if I have a cold?
No, if you are sneezing and coughing or very congested you should not attend. It is important that you do not have any infection at the time of donating. If you are unsure it is best not to give blood.
Can I donate if I feel ill, have a chesty cough or a cold sore?
If you are feeling under the weather with any of these things it’s best that you wait until you feel better before you give blood.
Can I donate blood if I am taking antibiotics or have an infection?
You must be completely healed or recovered from any infection for at least 14 days before you give blood. If you are taking antibiotics you may need to wait a period of time after your last tablet.
Can I donate if I am pregnant, or have recently been pregnant?
During your pregnancy, you are not able to give blood. If you had a blood transfusion during your pregnancy or at delivery then you will not be able to become a blood donor.
Can I give blood if I am receiving medical treatment or taking medication?
Whether or not you can donate will depend on the medication you are receiving as well as the condition for which you are being treated.
Can I give blood if I have been to the dentist or received dental treatment?
Simple fillings and check ups are usually ok after 24 hours. However, some treatments will mean a longer deferral.
Can I give blood if I have been travelling outside the UK?
Travel to some parts of the world can affect your ability to donate blood. You might have to wait for a period of time.
Can I give blood if I have a heart condition?
Specific information are required to know if you can give blood. It will depend on certain cardiac conditions.
Can I donate if I have got a tattoo or a body piercing?
If you had this done recently you may have to wait before you can donate again.
Can I give blood if I have had cancer?
It depends on the type of cancer & needs expert advice before donating.
Can I give blood if I have had a transfusion, or received blood products or an organ transplant?
Specific information are need about your transfusion which need to be checked by an expert. If you have received tissue or an organ, it may be possible to donate blood.
Can I donate blood if I have high or low blood pressure?
It is possible to donate blood if you have high blood pressure or low blood pressure. However, there are some restrictions.
Can I give blood if I have had acupuncture?
It may be possible to give blood after acupuncture. It is important to know the reason you had the treatment and the certification of the acupuncturist.
Can I give blood if I am gay?
There is no such onbstacle in becoming blood donors based on their sexuality. There are some restrictions for blood donors who take part in activities deemed risk behaviors by the Advisory Committee on the Safety of Blood, Tissues and Organs who advise UK ministers and health departments.
Click Here to locate certain centers who shall assist in arranging blood during crisis.