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Regular donors donate blood to help others and to stay healthy.

BAGUIO CITY, PHILIPPINES — More people are becoming aware that donating blood has numerous health benefits for both the donor and the beneficiaries.

Media professionals Jamie Joie Malingan, 26, of the Philippine Information Agency-Cordillera, who has been donating 450 cubic centimeters (cc) of blood every three months since May 2021, and Jonathan Munar, 50, a reporter of Radyo Pilipinas who has donated 45 times in the last 14 years, are among those who have known all along.

Malingan explained that it was her way of repaying her grandfather, who had benefited from blood donation.

“Matagal ko ng gustong magbigay kasi bago namatay ang grandma ko, nakahingi kami sa Red Cross,” Malingan explained.

In 2021, she donated for the first time when a coworker needed donors with the B+ blood type, which is the same as hers, for an emergency.

“Buti na lang natanong ako, nakapagbigay ako, nalaman ko paano kasi talagang desire ko ng magbigay ng dugo,” Malingan explained.

She claims that by donating blood, she not only helps others but also keeps herself healthy since it permits her body to manufacture new blood cells, which has been linked to lower blood pressure and a lower risk of a heart attack in studies.

Munar, for one, donated blood for the 45th time on June 14 in honor of World Blood Donors Day.

He did, however, say that he began giving when he was a Reserve Officer Training Corps cadet in college (ROTC).

Students, particularly ROTC and National Service Training Program (NSTP) students, are frequently encouraged to donate blood during mass blood donation activities by instilling in them the importance of volunteerism, giving, and helping save lives through a precious resource that cannot be created.

In a press conference on Thursday, Dr. Bernard Demot, an infectious disease expert at the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center, a Department of Health-run hospital, encouraged qualified blood donors to keep doing good actions.

People with leukemia, those undergoing surgery, and those undergoing dialysis treatment, among others, benefit from blood transfusions, according to him.

Blood is in high demand by patients suffering from acute dengue illness, especially during the rainy season.

The World Health Organization has designated June 14 as World Blood Donor Day in order to instill the importance of voluntary blood donation in order to ensure a safe blood supply for all those in need.

About 1% of the population in the region donates blood, according to Kristine Gale Raguindin, Nurse III at the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center.

In 2016, 1.40 percent of the population donated blood; in 2017, 1.30 percent donated blood; in 2018, 1.62 percent donated blood; in 2019, 1.18 percent donated blood; in 2020, 1.56 percent donated blood; and in 2021, 1.49 percent donated blood.

“Cordillerans are willing to donate blood, especially when a loved one is in need. “There are also a few people who come in every three months and give blood,” Raguindin remarked.

Blood is available for free.

Red Cross blood is free, according to Philippine Red Cross-Baguio administrator Annie Tamayo.

“It was given to us for free, and we are giving it away for free,” she explained.

All the patient has to pay is the screening charge, which assures that the blood is free of infectious diseases and other contaminants that could harm the recipient.

“We don’t let unchecked blood out.” “This is part of the quality control that we are required to perform in order to ensure a safe blood supply,” Tamayo explained.

The Red Cross, according to Tamayo, keeps a record of both walk-in and regular blood donors.

“Hindi tayo nauubusan ng dugo kapag nagbibigay tayo,” she remarked, adding that the bone marrow creates clean blood each time we donate, making the body healthier.

A donor’s health is also checked, and he must complete a checklist of information, which is a safety necessity for the donor.

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