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A small percentage of potential blood donors are ensuring the necessary supply of blood products in Finland

11/9/2021 9:00

Every year, around 120,000 people donate blood, which is about 3.5% of the potential blood donation population in Finland. Blood can be donated by people aged 18-70. New donors are constantly needed, as the population ages and the oldest donors can no longer give blood.

Approximately 3.5% of the Finnish population aged 18–70 donates blood. “Many people donate blood regularly or now and again for decades. Long-term donors are able to help dozens of patients during their blood donation career”, explains Satu Pastila, Director of Blood Donation at the Blood Service. 

“We can even donate blood for the first time as late as in our fifties. Donors starting later in life will also manage to help patients for up to a couple of decades, as blood donations are accepted until our 71st birthday. The upper age limit for first-time blood donors is 59 years”, Satu continues.

An increasing number of new blood donors are needed to meet the need for blood products in all situations. Every year, some blood donors have to temporarily or permanently stop giving blood as they reach the upper age limit, their personal circumstances change, or they become ill. Approximately 20,000 new blood donors a year will continue to provide sufficient blood products. 

Treatment with blood products is often life-saving. Blood is needed regularly for a variety of reasons, including supporting cancer treatments and surgeries and in emergency circumstances, such as when victims of accidents or mothers giving birth require blood transfusions. The Finnish Blood Service is responsible for ensuring that blood products are available in Finnish hospitals at all times – 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

Blood can be donated Mondays to Fridays throughout Finland. An appointment must be made in advance each time a donor wishes to donate blood. This can be done at bloodservice.fi.

Around 100 blood collection events are being held throughout November this year

We hold blood collection events weekly in more than 20 different locations. Check here for details on your next local blood donation event!

Are you considering to donate blood for the first time? Take the test to find out whether you could be a lifesaver!