World Blood Donor Day will be celebrated around the world on the 14th of June, and it marks the start of National Blood Donor Week in Australia, to recognise and thank those who voluntarily donate blood, and raise awareness of the critical need for regular donations. First celebrated in 2004, the 14th of June date was selected to recognise the birth anniversary of Karl Landsteiner who won a Nobel Prize in 1930 for his discovery of human blood groups and development of the ABO blood typing system.
So thank you, for your life-saving gift, to each of the 500,000 Australians who gave over 1.5 million donations to Lifeblood – and the 110,000 New Zealanders who gave over 150,000 donations to the NZ Blood Service. Hear from people who donate and the difference this has made in Australia and New Zealand.
Every week, Australia needs 29,000 blood donations. New Zealand needs 3,500.
Throughout the coronavirus restrictions on peoples’ movements, donations are, and remain, an essential health service. However, fewer people are donating than usual and donation centres experienced high rates of cancellations.
Donation centres are safe places to visit and have taken steps to ensure they stay that way via screening protocols, social distancing and additional hygiene measures to protect donors and staff. To help replenish and maintain stocks – donated blood has a shelf life of 42-days – new and existing donors are needed now.
Australians and New Zealanders are known for their generosity in times of need, including the recent requests for support during the bushfires which caused the closure of several donation centres, and the Whakaari/White Island eruption requiring additional universal plasma donations.
In addition to blood, donation centres are now collecting convalescent plasma – the liquid part of blood containing antibodies – from people who have recovered after a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 and have been symptom-free for at least 28-days to support clinical trials.
Here’s how you can make a difference:
- Within Australia, confirm your eligibility here and book an appointment here
- Within New Zealand, confirm your eligibility here and book an appointment here
- Become a regular donor
- Encourage your friends, family and colleagues to become regular donors
- Raise awareness of World Blood Donor Day and National Blood Donor Week within your social networks
Give blood, and make the world a healthier place.
Lead Business Analyst at Best Practice Software