As we think of gifts to give our family, friends, and other people important to us at this time of year, the greatest gift we can give is what we can give to a stranger — blood. It costs us nothing but a little time, yet it is probably the most difficult commodity to come by.
Each year, almost 5 million Americans of all ages need a blood transfusion. The reasons are varied. Some surgeries require blood. Trauma victims may need blood. Those suffering from anemia caused by cancer or other diseases and those with a bleeding disorder will need transfusions.