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Why should I donate ?

Blood Facts

  • The human body (a 70kg adult) contains about 5 litres of blood. It varies depending on sex and weight.
  • Blood is composed of 44% red blood cells, 55% plasma and around 1% consists of white blood cells and platelets.
  • Its mean body temperature is 36.7 degrees Celcius.
  • It has a pH of 7.35-7.45, making it slightly alkaline (less than 7 is considered acidic).
  • Whole blood is about 4.5-5.5 times as viscous as water, indicating that it is more resistant to flow than water. The viscosity of blood depends of the components, the flow rate and temperature. Different conditions lead to different viscosities.
  • Blood in the arteries is a brighter red than blood in the veins because of the higher levels of oxygen found in the arteries. 
  • A new born baby has about one cup of blood in his body.
  • Blood does not transport oxygen only, but also carbon dioxide, nutrients from the digestive tract and storage sites to the rest of the body, waste products, hormones to their target cells and heat to the skin so as to help regulate body temperature.
  • Red blood cells have two main functions; to carry oxygen from the lungs to the cells and carbon dioxide from the cells back to the lungs. 

These are few blood donation facts, why people with an altruistic attitude might want to become blood donors.

    • A large number of people depend on the continued generosity of others who are healthy.
    • For the sick person who needs transfusion, blood may be the difference between life and death.
    • A normal donation is one unit of blood, (i.e. 475ml). Average adults have about 5 litres in their body.
    • Giving blood will not decrease your health.
    • Our body replenishes controlled blood loss by itself.
    • Approximately 50 to 60 units of blood are needed daily to meet the demands from hospitals.
    • Red cells have to be used within 42 days.
    • People who have suffered great blood loss, may require about 50 units of red blood cells.
    • One or two serious accidents are often enough to drain our blood stocks.
    • Blood donation is safe.
    • Certain patients like those with kidney problems, require blood transfusions on a regular basis.
    • Nearly 300 grievous traffic accidents occur in Malta every year, 17 of which are fatal.
    • Maltese blood donors are enough to cater for the local requests, help us keep it this way.
    • If you started donating at 17 years of age and donated 3 times a year up to the age of 68, you would have donated over 69 litres of blood.
    • Anyone in good health, at least 17 years old, may donate blood every 3 months if male and every 4 months is female.
    • Globally around 112.5 million blood bags (donations) are collected yearly.
    • Up to three patients that can be treated with one pint of donated blood because whole blood is divided into 3 components: red blood cells, plasma and platelets.
    • Patients undergoing treatment for cancer, trauma patients and those undergoing major surgery may require a number of blood components for transfusion.
    • The actual blood donation usually takes around 7 minutes. The entire process - from the time you sign in to the time you leave takes about an hour.
    • You cannot get transmitted infectious disease by donating blood.
    • Tests for blood borne infectious diseases are performed on each unit of donated blood.
    • Platelets must be used within 5 days from collection.
    • There is no substitute for human blood.
    • Over 300,000 people in Malta can donate blood but barely 5% do.
    • Donors do it out of a sense of duty, and don’t expect anything back.
    • Blood is needed everyday.
    • Donating blood saves lives.  
 

Blood types facts

·         In Malta, people who have A positive, have the most common type of blood 41%. Individuals with A(+) blood are capable of donating to people with A pos. and AB pos.

·         The second commonest blood group is O+ (38%). Individuals with O pos blood are capable of donating to people with O pos, A pos, B pos, and AB pos.

·         O neg. blood 5% is known as the universal blood group because it can be transfused to almost any patient in need.

·         A neg. blood, considered one of the rare blood types, makes maintaining a proper supply of this blood in blood banks and hospitals very important. It is present in around 4.5% of the population​