Self-Diagnosis: The power of one pint

April 5, 2012 at midnight
Updated April 4, 2012 at 11:05 p.m.

Many things take 10 minutes these days.

You can choose to walk to your favorite restaurant down the street in 10 minutes.

You can sit in the drive-thru for 10 minutes or you can even spend 10 minutes (or more in most cases) checking Facebook.

So why not take 10 minutes to donate blood?

I understand that some people are put off by fear of needles or maybe even fear of blood, but what's the reason for others?

Blood is in high need and to give life is one of the most precious gifts you can give.

I've had my experiences donating blood in high school, and I've never regretted donating. However, I've never donated again because I no longer qualify (unfortunately).

It's thanks to blood donations that my grandfather was able to last just a little bit longer. He lasted long enough for us to make peace and say goodbye.

You have no idea how good that felt. Even then, we have a blood shortage. There will always be a need for blood.

How many people aren't able to say goodbye to a loved one because of lack of donation? Or perhaps the right blood type can't be found?

Blood should not be in shortage, especially when it's one of the most selfless things we can do.

At the same time, I feel the Federal Advisory Committee on Blood Safety and Availability should re-evaluate who can and cannot donate. While I understand safety is a prime issue, the fact that blood is heavily tested confuses me as to why these guidelines remain so strict.

Could a bit of a lax on these guidelines increase blood donations? Perhaps, but perhaps not.

What we need to do now is do what we can to help those in need.

Blood drives are going on almost everywhere, and you don't have to wait for a blood drive to help.

Remember, it takes 10 minutes.

J.R. Ortega is Features editor for the Advocate. Contact him at 361-580-6504 or, or comment on this story at www.VictoriaAdvo



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