Although dangerous winter driving conditions are common on the prairies, it’s surprising to note that more car accidents occur in warm weather. In fact, Alberta’s highest number of fatal motor vehicle collisions most frequently occurs in July. Since it can take up to 50 units of blood to save a single car crash victim, warmer weather may often see an increased need for blood donations.
Summer months are also a popular vacation time, so giving blood becomes especially important in warm weather to ensure that increased demand doesn’t coincide with a decline in regular donations. According to Canadian Blood Services, about 100,000 new donors are needed every year to meet demand.
Blood and blood products are a critical part of everyday medical care including major surgeries, medical procedures, cancer treatments, and managing disease.
Whole blood is made of several components that can be transfused separately or together to treat various conditions:
It takes about an hour to make a whole blood donation, but the blood you give will be used within days to help save a life. Your body contains about five litres of blood and approximately 450 ml of blood is in each unit collected.
To donate blood for the first time you must be:
For more information about donating blood, please visit the Canadian Blood Services website.
Canadian Blood Services (2018) Blood. www.blood.ca. Accessed May 23, 2018.
Government of Alberta (2016) Alberta Traffic Collision Statistics 2016. Alberta Transportation. www.transportation.alberta.ca. Accessed May 23, 2018.