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June 29, 2015 AT 4:00 pm

Swedish Blood Donors Receive Texts when Donations are Used

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From The Independent via Smithsonian.com:

With blood donation rates in decline all over the developed world, Sweden’s blood service is enlisting new technology to help push back against shortages.

One new initiative, where donors are sent automatic text messages telling them when their blood has actually been used, has caught the public eye.

People who donate initially receive a ‘thank you’ text when they give blood, but they get another message when their blood makes it into somebody else’s veins…

…In Stockholm, residents can go the local blood service’s website and see a live chart of how much blood is left.

“The same info as we have internally is shown externally,” says Ms Blom Wiberg.

The thinking is that when stocks run low, people will respond if they know there is a problem. It’s only recently become possible for ordinary donors who notice stocks are running low to raise the alarm with social media.

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