Let's Stop Blood Shortages!

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This petition was inspired by Holly Butcher, a 27 year old dying of cancer whose letter about life lessons went viral. Blood donations helped keep her alive an extra year, and one of her last requests called for people to become regular blood donors.

Increased demand for blood transfusions is contributing to the nationwide blood shortage. Blood transfusions are utilized for organ transplants, heart surgeries, chemotherapy, and much more. The summer and winter holidays, flu season, and weather conditions contribute to a shortage of tens of thousands of blood donations each year. 4.5 million Americans would die each year without lifesaving blood transfusions.

60% of the U.S. population is eligible to donate- only 5% do on a yearly basis.

What if there was a way to increase the number of blood donations?

There is.

Facebook has hundreds of millions of users in the United States alone. Facebook’s mission is to build an online community and bring the world closer together. Leveraging the social network to increase blood donations is one of the ways that we can tap into its potential to save millions of lives and bring the world closer together.

Facebook already possesses technology that allows for a personalized advertising platform which targets audience location, age, and interests. It also possesses technology that allows users to mark themselves as safe during an emergency. I’m sure Facebook can employ these technologies to create a notification system when blood banks are experiencing a shortage.

It’s honestly a simple idea: when blood supplies run low, hospitals and donation centers can notify Facebook users in the vicinity of a shortage. Users can then click on the notification and obtain more information about where to donate.

The Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative’s mission is to support the science and technology that will make it possible to cure, prevent, and manage all diseases by the end of this century. Facebook already has the technology to save countless lives. Although it may take a few months to test and develop this notification system, it’s important that this system is implemented. This is not a feature that the world wants from Facebook. It’s a feature that the world needs from Facebook. Let our voices be heard and let’s work together for progress!

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