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How to start donating blood

Many people think about donating blood but never do anything about it because they may feel the process is too complicated. In reality, it is very straightforward to donate your blood, with easy steps to follow.

There are several organisations where you can register for this, and you will find them all online. Once you have found a location convenient to you it is simply a matter of getting there.

Health history/mini physical

You will need to answer some questions in a private interview and you will be given a general health examination. You will be informed of your results soon, online if you have asked for them that way.

Registration

Once you have been accepted you will need to register at your local clinic. Remember to take two forms of ID. You will be asked to sign in, show your ID and given some information to read, pertaining to blood donations.

The donation

You will be offered a comfortable chair, or even given a bed, depending on where you donate blood. You will have a needle inserted into a vein in your arm and this will remain in place until you have given a pint of blood.

Recovery

After your donation you will be given a small snack and a drink. You will be asked to remain seated for a further 10 to 15 minutes before resuming your day.

Who can donate their blood?

  • Anyone between the age of 17 and 65
  • Anyone generally fit and well
  • Anyone with suitable veins (they will be checked before starting)
  • Anyone who meets donor eligibility criteria, also checked before you start 

Final thoughts

Many people are reluctant to donate blood because they feel it may take them too long or hurt too much. The truth is that the entire process should take about an hour and is no worse than any other injection you have ever had before.

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