Donating blood at New Jersey Blood Centers will start to get easier

By: Jaclyn Louie

The biggest challenge for blood centers is making sure that they have enough blood during critical periods.

December to January and July to August are the times that many people are busy or off from school, thus not thinking about donating blood.

That being said, The New Jersey Blood center in New Brunswick, N.J., is an essential blood donor location because it is in close proximity to Rutgers University, Johnson & Johnson, Robert Wood Johnson Hospital and St. Peter’s Hospital so it is crucial the blood distribution remains constant year-round.

To combat the lack of people coming during the slow months, all blood donation centers will begin to have online registration. Under the current system, to donate blood you must fill out all registration forms when you arrive. These forms take approximately 10 to 15 minutes to fill-out before one even begins the consultation with the nurse, and for people who want to donate blood, the long process may lead them away from following through with doing so.

With online registration, one is given the convenience of filling out all forms in the comfort of their own home or workplace and simply show up upon complete forms to donate blood.

Sharon DeToro, the New Brunswick Blood Center Pubic Relations Manager explained that,

“Blood can only be transfused from one human to another.  There is no substitute for blood. In the few minutes it takes to give a pint of blood, you can save three lives. Your pint is separated into red cells, platelets and plasma and can be transfused to three different patients.”

According to the Red Cross, every two seconds, someone in the United States needs blood. There are various reasons people need blood, for example, sickle cell disease.

Every year in the U.S. this disease affects 90,000 to 100,000 people and about 1,000 babies are born containing it. Patients often require blood transfusions throughout their lives. Along with sickle cell disease, many cancer patients every year need blood transfusions.

Along with quicker online registrations, New Jersey Blood Services uses cutting edge technology and continues to innovate.

“Automated donor machines in our three donor centers and on some blood drives give people the opportunity to give two units of red cells at one time.  Donor Centers also have machines for platelet and plasma donation, which may be used for cancer patients and burn victims.”

New Jersey Blood Centers continues to improve and work on marketing skills during times of low blood donation to encourage more people to want to donate blood, and to actually follow through with the process.

“New Jersey Blood Services and New York Blood Center have been serving the community of New Brunswick and the towns and cities in the metro area for over 40 years. Our greatest resource is our donors. Giving blood is easy as long as you are healthy, meet age and weight requirements and bring ID to the blood drive!”