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Sussex Teen Goes to Blood Bank For First Time

I recently visited a blood donation clinic, where I underwent a whole blood donation and learned many things about the organization and donating blood in general. The overall experience was quite pleasant. I was greeted by kind staff, sat on a comfortable couch while giving blood, had a good conversation with one of the staff members, and received food as well as a sense of fulfillment. I learned that my blood type, O negative, is highly sought after by clinics as it can be given to any person of any blood type. It is especially valued for traumas, where doctors or medics don’t have time or are unable to ask what a patient’s blood type is. However the most common donation at the blood bank I went to was O positive and A positive according to one of the staff. O positive is also sought after because it can be given to any Rh positive blood types. The blood donated remains in local areas, Delaware and Maryland, unless there is some type of emergency taking place. One of these emergencies was a hurricane in Florida, which caused a critical need for more blood, which Delmarva Blood Bank was able and happy to supply. Thanks to them, their donors, and many other blood banks, lives were saved.

Ben Parsons donates blood at the Delmarva Blood Bank

            The Blood Bank of Delmarva has also approved lowering the age for blood donors to sixteen years old, allowing me and many others to help our community and beyond. The day before my donation, the BBD hosted a blood drive at Indian River High School, giving the opportunity to help save lives to the students there. However there aren’t many young people donating today, most donors are over thirty years old at the blood bank. My grandmother was a longtime donor, she had O negative blood like myself, and made it a point to donate regularly. I wanted to follow her example, and have decided to do the same. I encourage the same to everyone. There are few things limiting a person from donating. As long as they answer the screening questions, which include things like checking for STDs, diseases, and pregnancies, you should be able to donate. There are no age limits. Younger folks must have their parents’ consent of course, but other than that, donating is easy. You simply come in, answer a few questions, get a prick in the thumb, then you give your blood. From there you sit back, watch TV, and then go to the canteen and eat a snack.

 

            Blood donations have gone into decline, never fully recovering from the Covid quarantine. Again, I encourage everyone to make donating blood a common task. As one of the blood bank’s regular donor’s put it “It’s my get out of jail free card.” This man didn’t have time to serve the community as a little league coach or anything similar, so he donated blood. It is a good experience, and gives you a feeling of satisfaction as you know because of your donation, someone is still breathing. So please, no matter your age, your blood type, or anything else, please help your neighbors and fellow countrymen by donating blood to save their lives.


Ben Parsons

Fenwick Island, Delaware

Student, Indian River High School

Founder Sussex Teens Are Responsible Stewards


Schedule your blood donation here at the Delmarva Blood Bank.

 

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