According to the Blood
Bank of Hawai‘i, a nonprofit organization that collects,
processes, and stores blood, almost 90 percent of U.S. citizens
will need blood transfusions sometime in their lives.
A pint of blood can save up to three lives. Different parts
of blood can be used for different medical purposes: whole
transfusions and component therapy; transfusions that require
a specific blood element or to treat a specific medical need
and used for patients in surgery to replace lost blood, or
to treat anemia and kidney disease.
HPU communication major, Shelly Awaya, is a regular blood donor. “When
my mom was sick and died, the amount of blood used (for her)
amazed me because so many people helped (by donating blood),” she
said. She said it’s an amazing feeling, “taking
an hour to save three lives.”
The Blood Bank holds a blood drive at HPU every semester, with
the last one held on Oct. 15. Students and faculty who missed
it or would like to donate again, may do so by appointment
at any of the nearby Blood Bank offices. The nearest one is
right down Fort Street Mall at 126 Queen St. Call 848-4726
to schedule an appointment .
The only requirements for donating blood are age and weight.
Donors must be at least 17 and weigh at least 110 pounds. Donors
who have a tattoo, must wait a year before donating blood to
ensure they don‘t have AIDS or any other restriction
for donating. According to the Puget Sound Blood Center, AIDS
be transmitted at the early stage of infection, when the test
results can be negative. Donors must wait several weeks before
For regular blood donors, the process is fast and easy. First-time
donors should be prepared to spend a little more time to register,
they need to present valid identification to verify birthdate
and social security number.
A nurse then interviews them about health and social history,
then proceeds to check pulse, blood pressure, temperature,
and hemoglobin. After this point, donors may be deferred for
of reasons, which the nurse will explain.
Donors who are accepted have to sit or lay on a bed, and a
nurse will give them a stress ball to pump the blood, and then
draw blood into a designated bag.
Once the donation is complete, food and refreshments are provided.
For more information see BBH’s Web site