You are kind, generous and brave. You give unselfishly of yourself to provide for your loved ones. You are a remarkable woman. Therefore the WP Blood Transfusion Service (WPBTS) wishes all our female donors a joyful and prosperous Women’s Month.

WPBTS is committed to the health and safety of the recipient, as well as the donor. Therefore various precautions are taken before a donor is able to donate blood. These precautions lead to women having a few extra hurdles to overcome should they wish to donate blood.

There are a few reason which may lead to females not being able to donate blood on any given day and here are a few:

  • Weight plays an important role in the donation of blood. Basic criteria stipulates that the minimum weight requirement to become a donor is 50kg. Women generally have a smaller body frame to men and the volume of blood donate (475ml) is calculated in relation to body weight.
  • In order to donate blood, women are required to have a minimum haemoglobin level of 12.5g/dl. Many women struggle with iron deficiency, which is usually due to heavy menstruation or pregnancy.
  • It is not the norm for women to make as many donations in their lifetime as men. This is due to the fact that women aren’t allowed to donate blood during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
  • Women are also very often primary caregivers of children and therefore work from home. It is therefore not as convenient to donate as it would be when WPBTS visits your place of work.

Despite these limitations, research indicated that 49% of WPBTS’s donors were female donors during 2015. Remarkable, isn’t it?

Any person older than 16 years, weighing more than 50kg and who leads a healthy, safe lifestyle can donate blood. Donors must remember to eat three to four hours before donating blood and increase their fluid intake before, during and after blood donation.

For more information, SMS “Blood” to 33507 and the WP Blood Transfusion Service (WPBTS) will call you back with information on where to donate. Donors can also call (021) 507 6300, e-mail or visit  Like us on Facebook (WP Blood) or follow us on Twitter (@WPBlood) for interesting facts and blood stock updates.