With an increase in seasonal illnesses and the holiday season, January is the month of critical blood shortages, so January has been named national blood donor month. In addition to the seasonal illnesses and holiday season, the ongoing pandemic has made it even more crucial for blood drives and donor participation.
Reasons to donate:
• 31,000 pints of blood are used every day
• Every two seconds, someone in the united states needs a blood product
• If all eligible individuals donated two or more times a year, blood shortages would be eliminated
• Blood transfusions save around 4.5 million American lives each year
Donated blood is not only used to save lives but is also used for research in blood-borne diseases. The Red Cross is one of the top leaders in testing for deadly diseases such as HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, and West Nile Virus.
There are multiple different ways to observe this national month:
• Donate: in any 8-week period, you can donate blood and platelets once or give six platelet donations.
• Host a Blood Drive: by hosting a blood drive, you can increase your impact. By encouraging only ten people to donate, you can help save up to 30 lives.
• Spread the word: If you are not able to donate, you can still help spread the word. Sharing social media posts and talking to friends and family is a great way to spread awareness.
• Learn and remember your blood type: It is crucial to know your blood type. People who have O+ blood are needed more often than any other blood type. If you are O-, you are considered to be a universal donor. This means any blood type can use this donation when they are in need of blood.
To ensure you receive all pertinent information, please update your address with the Fund Office, Wilson-McShane Corporation, when you move. To update your information, you may access the Change of Personal Information Form from the website www.663benefits.com. You may also call (952) 851-5797 or toll-free (844) 468-5917 to request a Change of Information Form.