A blood bank yesterday called on people to help boost stocks of blood ahead of winter, when cold weather usually deters people from giving blood.
Although there are no signs of a shortage at present, dropping temperatures are likely to stop prospective donors from venturing outdoors to give blood, the Taiwan Blood Services Foundation said.
“People don’t like to give blood when it is rainy and cold, which is what we are expecting in the coming months,” said Taiwan Blood Services Foundation public relations director Tsung Ping said. “With the approach of the winter vacation and Lunar New Year, blood stocks will be even lower.”
Blood stocks during winter are roughly 20 percent less than in other seasons, she said.
With this in mind, the foundation announced it would hold a month-long blood donation campaign starting on Dec. 21 to stock up on supplies for the Lunar New Year holiday period, which lasts for nine days in January.
“Foreigners and overseas Taiwanese are also welcome to donate blood,” she said, adding that designated blood centers would be open throughout the holiday.
Aside from bringing a passport, foreign residents, like Taiwanese, will need to answer questions about their health and be tested for hemoglobin levels before donation.
Tsung urged teenagers to step up and give blood because a fall in donors has been observed in the 17 to 20 age group over the past five years. Seventeen is the minimum age for blood donation.
One donor named Lee (李) and his twin brother donated 0.25 liters of blood.
“I wanted to make a contribution to society,” he said.