Tuesday, February 23, 2016

SAVE A LIFE: Blood Donation Drive This Upcoming Week at Sultan Qaboos University Hospital's Blood Bank

If you've ever had a relative who was in a serious car accident or had a child who suffered from an illness, you'll know how gravely low the blood bank supplies are in Oman. Donating in one blood bank, blood is often rushed from one hospital to another as supplies are that low.

The Oman Blood Bank are going to be doing a drive next week at the Sultan Qaboos University Hospital at the Blood Bank (you can tell security you are going to donate blood at the blood bank for directions). You can come and wait to donate, or you can phone 2414 4987 to make an appointment for a no-waiting donation.

Now I am one of those sad little persons who is almost never allowed to donate blood (darn anemia---darn underweight body!!!) but to do my part I'd like to publicize the event.

WHAT IS BLOOD DONATION?:
1.) Donation consists of giving whole blood which is extracted via a needle in one-go, and is pretty painless.
2.) All needles are clean and individual. All persons collecting blood are medical professionals.
3.) This blood is required for persons who will die without it. You can save a life just by taking 20-30 minutes out of your day to donate.
4.) Blood is not given out on a "wasta" basis, I assure you, and all donations will be fairly distributed in the public healthcare sector, and in private if required for a life-saving situation.
5.) Generally the body can re-produce the donated portion of blood very quickly, with no effect after 20 minutes on the donor,  however it is not medically recommended to donate whole blood sooner than every 56 days.

CAN I DONATE?
Blood donation generally has some conditions.

1.) That you, yourself, are in good health.
2.) You meet the age and weight requirements for a suitable donor.

A good guide to general eligibility can be found on this website (it has a weight and age calculator that is pretty useful in confirming your ability to donate): https://www.blood.ca/en/blood/can-i-donate

With in depth information here https://www.blood.ca/en/blood/abcs-eligibility . At the upcoming SQUH blood drive they will go over this checklist for you to confirm your eligibility.

HOW TO BE READY TO DONATE:
1. Have an adequate amount of sleep and food before donating.

AFTER DONATION:
1. Expect to rest for 10-15 minutes before leaving the donation area. Most people aren't affected at all by blood donation but this will help the minority who might experience dizziness immediately after donation.
2. Drink plenty of fluids for the next 4-5 hours following your donation. (Back the couple of times I was allowed to donate I drank plenty of fresh orange juice and ate yummy digestive cookies!!!!)
3.) Keep the bandage on and clean for the 5 hours proceeding your donation appointment.
4.) Do not do exercise or heavy lifting for the next 12 hours proceeding your donation.
5.) Eat healthy meals including iron rich foods (spinach, steak, etc.).

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