Patients can give thanks to their blood donors through the use of technology

Posted at 6:22 AM, Sep 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-09-20 07:52:55-04

TULSA, Okla. - Through the use of technology, people can thank those who have donated blood to them or a loved one. All it takes is a smartphone or tablet.

St. Francis Hospital and the Oklahoma Blood Institute (OBI) partnered up to create Thank-The-Donor program to enable communication between the blood donor and the person receiving the blood.

"I'm very excited. I really wanted to thank my donors for about five years when I was diagnosed and going through treatment," said 19-year-old Holly Benningfield of Tulsa.

She was a former patient at St. Francis Hospital when she was battling Leukemia. Benningfield survived her battle with cancer, and she said it wouldn't have been possible without blood donations.

"I needed about 22 units of blood and without those donations, I wouldn't be here right now talking to you or getting to do the things that I want to do," said Benningfield.

Patients like Benningfield now have the unique opportunity to thank their blood donors through the new website, which is offered in many languages. It takes about five steps and is free to use.

"By developing this channel, we can take what's usually been a very complicated process... now we can use technology to make this happen frequently," said Dr. John Armitage," said the CEO and President of OBI.

Dr. Armitage said this service maintains the anonymity of the patient. A curator screens the thank you messages to make sure no confidentiality rules are broken before sending the messages to the blood donor.

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