Blood donation: first-timer or yet to be convinced? Here’s what you need to know:

Veteran blood donor and Clinical Nurse Consultant for Quality, Surgery and Critical Care at The Prince Charles Hospital (TPCH), Nicki Cheales, is one of the life-giving 1 in 30 Australians who donate blood each year.

Donated blood can be turned into 22 different medical treatments, helping those who have cancer and blood diseases, surgical patients, pregnant women and trauma victims, to name a few. We’re bound to have someone in our lives we care about who has needed blood before or will need blood in their life.

But did you know donated blood lasts just 42 days? So if you’re still waiting for a reason to give it a go, perhaps Australia’s need for 31,000 donations every week is enough to get you over the line.

Still not convinced? Nicki has tackled our concerns and misconceptions below, to encourage you to give it a go.

Nobody will take your blood if you aren’t a suitable candidate

When you attend your donation appointment, your blood pressure and Haemoglobin (oxygen in your blood) levels are checked to make sure you are fit, healthy and ready to donate. If you’re not up to it, you won’t have your blood taken.

You can be a hero

Blood donation is so simple and straight forward, it’s the easiest way we can think of being able to give back to the community.

You get to know where your blood goes

Following your donation appointment, you’ll receive a text message telling you exactly which hospital and region your blood has gone to help. How’s that for feel-good follow-up!

If you’re a fainter, your blood isn’t wasted

The team at Australian Red Cross Lifeblood are aware that sometimes people faint. Often, this is one of the reasons people are worried about donating. But you need not worry – all donations are performed lying down so you’re not at risk of falling, and if you pass out, the team will stop the transfusion and still use what you were able to give prior to fainting.

If you’d like to donate blood and become a regular donor like Nicki, you can contact the Australian Red Cross Lifeblood on 13 14 95.