Platelets, plasma and whole blood are all much in demand
THERE are three types of blood donations.
Whole blood donation
This involves collecting three blood components (red cells, plasma and platelets).
O-negative donors - known as "universal donors" - are always needed for whole blood donations. It is the only blood type that can be safely given to everyone - whatever their blood type.
Donations can be made every 12 weeks
Plasma donations involve donating a concentrated collection of plasma only, through a process called apheresis.
It takes about 45 minutes, but donors should allow one-and-a-half hours for the whole process from interview to refreshments.
Donations can be made every two weeks as the red cells are returned to the giver at the time of donation
Blood type A, AB and B donors are particularly needed for plasma donations.
Platelet donation involves donating a concentrated collection of platelets only, through a process called apheresis.
Donations can be every two to four weeks as platelets are replaced within a few days of donation.
Blood type A and O donors are particularly needed for platelet donation.