(HealthDay News) -- Donating blood for the first time may sound intimidating. But the process is fairly painless, takes only about 20 minutes and could help save a life.
The American Red Cross explains the different types of blood donation:
Whole blood -- The most common and quickest type of donation, involving a pint of whole blood. The donation is typically separated into transfusable components, including red cells, plasma and platelets.
Red cells -- Red blood cells are the most frequently transfused part of blood. In this type of collection, only the red blood cells are collected and most of the platelets and plasma are returned to the donor.
Platelet -- Platelet donations take longer than whole-blood donations. During this procedure, an apheresis machine collects platelets and returns red cells and the majority of the plasma back to the donor. Platelets are an important part of some cancer treatments and organ donation.
Plasma -- For this type of donation, only plasma is collected. Red cells and platelets are returned to the donor.
For Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts members
Find a Doctor & Estimate Costs
Health & Wellness
Attend a Seminar
Request a Call
Manage Your Account
Plans & Products
Forms & Documents
Tools & Support for Educating Employees
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts is an Independent Licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.® Registered Marks of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.®´ ®´´ Registered Marks are the property of their respective owners.© 101 Huntington Avenue, Suite 1300, Boston, MA 02199-7611 | 1-800-262-BLUE (2583)
About Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts
Nondiscrimination and Translation Resources
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts is a leading provider of quality health insurance for residents of Massachusetts. Our main goal is to make health care cost-effective by offering health insurance solutions for individuals, families, and large and small businesses at affordable rates.
Our Vision — Making Quality Health Care AffordableOur Promise — To Always Put Our Members First
To learn more about our Massachusetts health plans, please visit our Plans & Products page, where you can compare Massachusetts health insurance plans, buy health plans online, and get Mass health insurance quotes.
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts also offers insurance, pharmacy coverage, and Medicare Plans for seniors; life and disability insurance through Indigo Insurance Services (a wholly owned subsidiary); and insurance for individuals aged 18-26 years. Learn more about our other insurance plans and Medicare plans, or contact a sales representative today.