American Red Cross Schedules Drives in Eaton, Ingham, and Clinton Counties
Think you’re not a good candidate for blood donation? Think again. Sometimes, people with high blood pressure and diabetes suspect they’re not eligible to give blood. Many cancer survivors also believe they will be deferred because of their previous illness.
“That’s not always the case,” said Todd Kulman, Communications Program Manager for the Great Lakes Blood Services Region of the American Red Cross. “We’re working to dispel myths and to educate people about who can give blood and when.”
In the United States, about 38-percent of the population is eligible to donate blood. The most common reason someone might not be able to give on any given day is low hemoglobin. Red Cross officials say that measure of iron in red blood cells can often be improved by eating more iron-rich foods or by talking to your doctor about taking iron supplements.
“The good thing is, most deferrals are for a short period of time,” said Kulman. “Most of the time, people can monitor and address the cause, and then come back to give blood again.
Donors with high blood pressure can give blood as long as their condition is controlled. Diabetics can donate if their blood sugar is controlled with diet, oral medication or with most insulins. Some cancer survivors can also donate. People with a history on nonhematologic cancer must be cancer-free for one year, have completed all their treatments and meet other eligibility criteria.
CLICK HERE to find a drive near you and schedule an appointment online.