January is national blood donor month. Giving blood is an opportunity to save a life. See the following facts from the Red Cross regarding blood donation:
- Approximately 36,000 units of red blood cells are needed every day in the U.S.
- Nearly 7,000 units of platelets and 10,000 units of plasma are needed daily in the U.S.
- Nearly 21 million blood components are transfused each year in the U.S.
- The average red blood cell transfusion is approximately 3 units.
- The blood type most often requested by hospitals is type O.
- Sickle cell disease affects 90,000 to 100,000 people in the U.S. About 1,000 babies are born with the disease each year. Sickle Cell patients can require blood transfusion throughout their lives.
- According to the American Cancer Society, about 1.7 million people are expected to be diagnosed with cancer in 2017. Many of them will need blood, sometimes daily, during their chemotherapy.
- A single car accident victim can require as many as 100 pints of blood.