Michigan Blood pays tribute to statewide donors, including local man

They are co-workers, family members, classmates and neighbors … the everyday people that save lives of strangers. On Friday, June 14th millions of blood donors were recognized as part of World Blood Donor Day.

Michigan Blood recognized its top donors, those who have given multiple gallons of blood throughout their years of donating. One of those high level donors is Melvin Wood, a Rockford resident. He donated 34 gallons, placing him sixth in the top ten list of donors in Michigan. Considering it takes eight pints to make up a gallon means Wood has made over 270 trips to blood centers or mobile blood drives throughout the course of his donation history.

Blood collection from voluntary donors is the cornerstone of a safe and sufficient blood supply. At Michigan Blood, more than 100,000 donors help serve the needs of hospitals around the state. These donors assure that patients who are suffering from massive trauma, undergoing surgery, or in need of cancer therapy have the blood needed to stay alive.

The public is invited to stop by the Michigan Blood donor center between June 14-June 28 during our regularly scheduled donor hours to find out more about what inspired the top ten high level donors to start donating, and what motivates them to keep on giving. Visitors who want to donate can schedule an appointment at 1-866-MIBlood or miblood.org.

The World Health Organization says World Blood Donor Day, celebrated on 14 June every year, serves to raise awareness of the need for safe blood and blood products and to thank voluntary unpaid blood donors for their life-saving gifts of blood. 92 Million blood donations are made worldwide each year.  62 countries collect 100% of blood supplies from voluntary unpaid donors.  The slogan marking this year’s 10th World Donor Day is “Give the gift of life: donate blood.”  Many patients requiring transfusion, particularly in developing countries, do not have timely access to safe blood. Regular voluntary blood donors are the safest source of blood, as there are fewer blood borne infections among these donors than among people who donate for family members in emergencies or who give blood for payment. In low- and middle-income countries, the greatest use of donated blood is for pregnancy-related complications and severe childhood anemia.  In high-income countries, transfusion is most commonly used for supportive care in heart surgery, transplant surgery, massive trauma and cancer therapy.

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