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Blood Donations Paper - Essay Example

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1. Background Researchers and policy makers are highly interested in understanding and motivating individual behavior supporting positive social activities. Various activities of this kind represent a large part of social life. These activities are generally composed of donating personal time and money to a range of different causes and organizations…
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Blood Donations Paper
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"Blood Donations Paper"

Download file to see previous pages Blood is required regularly and in large quantities to deal with patients ranging from accident victims to leukemia patients. For example, in the United States only 8% of the 115 million Americans who are eligible for blood donations actually come through and donate blood. This situation is worrisome given that each year massive expense is diverted to awareness campaigns in order to increase the number of potential donors (American Red Cross, 2009). In recent years, the amount of volunteering required for blood donation has been decreasing due to a number of causes resulting in pressures on the overall blood donation system. These causes and their effects are listed below in detail to aid policy formulation. 2. Causes Blood donation is a healthy activity that ought to be encouraged in all segments of population. Reasons behind blood donation have often been the subject of research. A study conducted to gauge the reasons behind providing blood and stopping blood donations found that there was little difference in blood donation patterns across genders. The study found that the same factors motivated and de-motivated blood donors irrespective of the gender of the blood donor. The study also found that the biggest reason for blood donations was the influence of a friend. This category of donors represented nearly half of all filed responses (47.2%). In contrast, only 23.5% of all donors indicated that they were providing a blood donation because of a request through media (Sojka & Sojka, 2008). These requests placed through the media represent all kinds of print, digital and social media in use in the current context. This indicates that the amount of donors being influenced by media outlets is low and could be improved in order to boost blood donations. Another cause behind blood donations shortage is the lack of economic incentives coupled to donating blood. It has been found through a number of studies that blood donors are more ready to respond when they are offered some kind of economic incentive (Miller & Weikel, 1974) (Titmuss, 1971) (Sojka & Sojka, 2008). This finding has been consistently reported throughout literature on the issue as indicated from the life of the literature cited above. Another consistent finding in this respect is that blood donors tend to shift from one blood donation program to the other given the richness of the incentive being offered. In order to attract more and more blood donors it is necessary to pursue an effective advertisement campaign focused on creating more leverage for the intended blood donation program. Studies have also found that the most common reason for not becoming a regular blood donor include laziness (19.1%) followed by a fear of needles (10.5%) (Sojka & Sojka, 2008) which are both conditions that could be dealt with using a properly targeted marketing campaign. If people could be allowed to take over their procrastination and their fear of being pricked by a needle, the potential increase in blood donors would be about 30% combined. Increasing the number of donors is also important given that historically existing blood donors have tended to decrease (Miller & Weikel, 1974). This has come about either due to adverse reaction or due to medical disqualification of existing donors. It has been estimated that 15% of all blood donors are ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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