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Two blood donor badges, United Kingdom, 1970-1981

Blood for transfusions in the United Kingdom comes from volunteer donors. Many donate blood every four months. The National Blood Service in the United Kingdom uses a donor award scheme. For the 25th donation a person makes, they receive a Silver Award pack with a certificate and a badge with “25” on it. For their 2,000th donation, they receive a crystal decanter and a badge with “2000” on it. These badges have the word “Silver” written on them. Blood transfusions are given to patients who have lost a lot of blood during surgery. In the United States donors are paid.

Object number:

1981-476 Pt2

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    Glossary: badge

    Objects bearing special or distinctive marks, tokens, or devices signifying membership, allegiance, authority, or qualification; usually worn on the person.

    Glossary: blood donation

    The donation of blood for the purposes of transfusion or testing.

    Glossary: anaemia

    A shortage of haemoglobin (the pigment carrying oxygen in red blood cells). Symptoms include weakness, pale skin, breathlessness, faintness, palpitations, and lowered resistance to infection.

    Glossary: blood transfusion

    An injection of healthy, donated blood into a patient to raise his or her number of red blood cells. The blood is matched according to type (A, B, O, AB).