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What blood type are you and what does this mean?

Blood_compatible_table

(Source: Australian Red Cross Blood Service)

When you donate for the first time, you will be informed about what blood type you have through a donor card that you’ll be able to keep. For those who are fantastic at not remembering things, this card is awesome as a quick reference for what your blood type is.

You inherit your blood type from your parents. Their combination of genetics determine the presence or absence of antigens on the surface of your red blood cells. There are four blood types: O, A, B and AB. These are further split into positive and negative.

Here’s the Australian Red Blood Cross’ nifty little break down of each blood type.

Blood type B

  • 10% of Australians have B blood type
  • As type B is one of the rarest blood types, B type blood donors are always needed, particularly for plasma donations
  • By giving plasma regularly, you can help people with B and O blood types

Blood type A

  • 38% of Australians have type A blood
  • As type A blood is common, it is in constant demand and more is always needed
  • By giving blood regularly you can help other As and also people with AB blood types

Blood type O

  • 49% of Australians have type O blood
  • As type O blood is the most common, it is in constant demand and more is always needed
  • By giving blood regularly you can help other Os and also people with AB, A and B blood types

Blood type AB

  • Just 3% of Australians have type AB blood
  • Even though type AB is the rarest blood type, type AB plasma can help people with any blood type. So, more type AB plasma donors are always needed
  • By giving plasma regularly you can help people with AB, O, B and A blood types

(Source: Australian Red Cross Blood Service)

So why is it important to know your blood type?

First of all, some blood types are significantly rarer than others. As a result, donations for these blood types are often in high need.

On the flip side, other blood types are much more common and compatible with other blood types. This means that the need for them also is much higher.

Lastly, knowing your blood type might save you or someone you loves’ life. If there ever comes a time where someone you know requires an urgent blood donation, knowing your type means you can become an instant donor to them. Similarly, knowing your blood type can also save your life. This is where your blood donor card shines. If you were ever in any sort of situation where you required an urgent donation, a person would be able to find out your blood type simply by checking your blood donor card.

Blood types graph

(Source: Australian Red Cross Blood Service)

So why not donate blood today?

Not only will you be instantly saving three lives, but you could potentially save your or a loved ones life in the future.

Source:

Australian Red Cross Blood Service, n.d, Blood Types, http://www.donateblood.com.au/about-blood/types

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Why Gen Y don’t donate blood: The answers may surprise you!

 

If you asked someone why they don’t donate blood, what answers would you expect? A fear of needles? Concerns of running out of blood? Don’t know where to donate?

What about because Europe’s on sale?

A study conducted by the Australian Red Cross Blood Service discovered that whilst Australians between 18- 25 are highly motivated to donate blood, reasons such as travelling, changes in lifestyle, inconvenience, a lack of control in the process and getting a tattoo prevented them becoming repeated donors.

They found that getting Gen Y’ers motivated to donate wasn’t the problem; it was more that the blood donation process wasn’t Gen Y friendly. 

Sound familiar?

Between the everyday task of performing a balancing act between our education, working, procrastinating and maintaining a social life for sanity reasons, booking an appointment to donate blood can seem a little inconvenient.

To make it worse, the excitement of getting an international tan or your favorite Flume lyrics tattooed on your forearm often leaves donating blood the last thing on your mind.

So what can you do to make sure you save three lives whilst making sure yours is still awesome?

Think of donating blood as part of your pre- holiday or tattoo pump up process. Instead of getting a tattoo or travelling as a limit, think of it as an opportunity to donate blood.

Finding out when your university or TAFE is holding a blood drive is another way to make blood donation a simpler process. Instead of watching YouTube videos in the library between classes, visit the blood van and donate. You’ll contribute to an awesome cause and get a free meal at the same time- score!

The most important solution is remembering that the blood donating process is actually quite quick. Once you’ve donated blood before, the prelim testing isn’t required. All that’s left for you to do is rock up to your local Australian Red Cross Blood Donation centre, pull up a sleeve and enjoy some guilt free relaxation.

After all, it only takes an hour of your time (or an episode of Breaking Bad) to change someone’s life.