Guess what I did tonight?Â Go on, guess.Â Nope, try again.Â Shall I tell you?Â Well…
I gave blood.Â I’ve been doing it several times a year for over 10 years now.Â I have no medical skills, the thought of the pain of bone marrow donation gives me the shivers (not terribly manly, I know) so I do this.Â I let a nice lady put a needle in my arm and withdraw about a pint of blood.
Do it, do it now.Â The next life you save may be mine.Â And I can think of nothing more important than that :)
What do they do?Â Well, lets ask The National Blood Service:
Donating blood is simple
The blood donation process is much quicker and easier than you think. You just need to follow these five simple steps:
A tiny drop of blood will be taken from your fingertip. This allows us to check your haemoglobin levels – to ensure that giving blood won’t make you anaemic.
Step Â 4
It’s time to take your blood. There’s nothing to worry about, most people hardly feel a thing. Normally about 470ml is taken – just under a pint – which is quickly replaced by your body.
Step Â 5
Once you’ve given blood, you will have a short rest before going to the refreshment area for a drink and biscuits. Giving blood shouldn’t take more than an hour.
This is how we do it in the UK.Â Your particular country may do it differently.Â It’s takes very little time (I was in and out in under an hour, though the fact that everyone else was watching England beat Trindad and Tobago 2-nil may have helped) and I had a nice chat with the Donor Carer.
And here’s some stuff about The National Blood Service themselves:
The National Blood Service is not to be confused with the National Health Service.
We are an integral part of the NHS, and we guarantee to deliver blood, blood components, blood products and tissues from our 15 blood centres to anywhere in England and North Wales.
Naturally, we also ensure that the blood we supply is properly screened and is safe for patients. Every year we collect, test, process, store and issue 2.1 million blood donations. We depend entirely on voluntary donations from the general public, and try to encourage our existing donors to give three times a year. (It’s amazing what the promise of a free cup of tea and some biscuits will do…)
But we also have a number of other functions. Such as continually carrying out new research into improving the safety of blood. And new ways it can be used to help save more lives.
We also provide specialist medical advice and clinical support to hospitals, as well as educating and training transfusion machine specialists. It’s a huge undertaking. But we’re dedicated to keeping Britain’s blood supply moving.
So do it and do it now.Â It’s easy and painless and you could actually help to save a life.