My work is doing a blood drive again, which means I get frequent emails from HR pleading for everyone to donate. But this time, the emails are not the standard ones I could recite by heart, but new ones from the eager HR intern. He wrote a 10 paragraph email asking people to donate. I read it because I was amused, but I doubt most people did. In it, he makes what seems to me like a rather lofty claim:

Less than 5 percent of the eligible population donates. However, more than 90 percent of the population will need blood in their lifetime.

He cites nothing, but does later mention Mass General Hospital, so I checked and realized this tidbit is lifted from their FAQs. I feel like this number cannot possibly be correct, so I set to googling. While I found another source repeating this 90% of the population claim (this one in NC, so that shoots down my theory that maybe this refers to 90% of the MA population, which still seems way too high), I also found several sources claiming 14%, or 14% of those who enter hospitals... and the latter site makes the additional claim that 25% of the overall population will need blood once in their lifetime, apparently unaware that this really doesn't mesh with their "14% of those who enter hospitals" claim (unless the 14% of those who enter hospitals counts each visit from the same person as a separate event?).

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So my point is, where is this info coming from? The 90% seems flagrantly false. Anyone have any insight here? I'm finding it irritating that hospitals are spreading misinformation, though I'm guessing they think they've gotten the numbers from some "reliable" source.