Why men should donate blood

Men can donate more often than women and typically make good platelet donors.

Ben Kay giving blood
Rugby player Ben Kay giving blood: we need more men to sign up as blood donors

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3 reasons why men make good blood donors

1. Men can donate more often than women

Men can give blood every 12 weeks whereas women have to wait 16 weeks to protect their iron levels.

As men can donate more often, men who donate regularly play a big role in providing the almost 5,000 donations needed every day.

2. Men are often suitable platelet donors

Men generally have a higher platelet count than women meaning they are more likely to be accepted as a platelet donor.

The process of donating platelets takes longer than giving blood – but it is just as straightforward  and you can donate up to 24 times a year.

3. Men’s blood often contains fewer antibodies

The absence of some antibodies in men’s blood makes it easier to use in blood products such as plasma and platelets (often used to treat people with burns and cancer or those in accidents).

Women can create extra antibodies during pregnancy which means their blood is not always suitable for people with weakened immune systems.

Become a blood donor

I feel really good after I donate, especially when you get the text message to say which hospital your blood has gone to.
Meshach Snape, 27, has donated blood 16 times

Donor and donor carer at Leicester donor centre

At the moment, two thirds of new donors are women and a third are men. It only takes 5 to 10 minutes to fill a blood bag.

To get started as a blood donor you just need to register and book an appointment.

Your blood type

You will find out your blood type at your first donation. Find out why some types are in high demand.

Got a busy week?

Don’t worry if you can’t find an appointment straightway - book one further in the future instead. 

Our 23 largest donor centres have the most blood donation slots, and many are open at the weekend.

People need blood all year round so your donation will still save lives, even if it's a few months in the future.