National Blood Donor Month: Advice to Clinicians

January 24, 2021
Jonathan Alicea

Jonathan Alicea is an assistant editor for HCPLive. He graduated from Princeton University with a degree with English and minors in Linguistics and Theater. He spends his free time writing plays, playing PlayStation, enjoying the company of his 2 pugs, and navigating a right-handed world as a lefty. You can email him at jalicea@mjhlifesciences.com.

Rodney Wilson, spokesperson from the American Red Cross, offers some final thoughts on how providers can encourage blood donations among their patients.

In the final part of the interview, Rodney Wilson, Senior Biomedical Communications Specialist of American Red Cross, offered some words to clinicians on how best to approach patients in encouraging blood donations.

“I would say that it’s so important to talk about that blood, how important that blood is in the treatment of the patient, and the fact that blood doesn’t grow on trees” Wilson said.

He noted that many physicians may already have a relationship established with their patients and their families.

As such, leaning into that relationship, the trust forged from it, and directly asking a patient to donate blood can go a long way.

One point that physicians may want to emphasize when having these conversations with their patients is that they likely know someone who has relied on blood donors.

“About 97% of us know someone who is alive because of a blood transfusion,” Wilson said.

“So, if you think about who in your life is alive because they received a blood transfusion, that will get you to realize how important this is.”

Currently, only 3% of the US population gives blood despite there being a constant need for it. Physicians having direct conversations with patients about the importance of donations, which includes offering the most up-to-date information, can make a difference.

Go here for Part I of the interview.

Go here for Part II of the interview.


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