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Blood donation

Blood donation involves collecting blood from a donor so that it can be used to treat someone else.
What happens during blood donation
In most cases, blood donation is a relatively straightforward process. NHS Blood and Transplant holds more than 26,000 blood donation sessions a year.
Who can donate blood?
Most people between the ages of 17 and 65 who weigh over 50kg (7st 12lb) and have a good level of general health will be able to donate blood.
How is blood donation used
Blood donations save lives every day. They are used in a wide variety of different situations and to treat a large number of different illnesses and conditions.
Cord blood donation
Cord blood is the blood that remains in the placenta and umbilical cord after a baby is born. It can be used to treat many life-threatening conditions.
Platelet donation
A platelet donation is a relatively new way of donating blood. It involves using special equipment to separate out the platelet cells from the donated blood.
'I was losing blood faster than it could be transfused'
Motor sport fanatic Mike Austin was riding to work on his much-loved motorbike when he collided with a car.
'I always tell myself that there are people who are worse off'
Nisa Karia has needed blood transfusions for most of her life. She has received more than 1,300 units of blood so far.
'I have a rare blood type so it's important that I give blood'
Rudolph Isaacs has donated 41 pints of blood in 17 years. He explains why giving blood is important and how it is an easy way to help.