Inspired to give his all

Updated: 2012-03-07 10:55

By Zhang Yue (China Daily)

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Guangdong province native Qi Gang has given 59 liters of blood since 2000, donating 11 times his total supply.

The 37-year-old dispatcher at Guangdong Tobacco Company has given blood 75 times after a TV advertisement calling for donors inspired him, he says.

"I learned many people in Dongguan (near where he used to live) had to rush to nearby cities like Guangzhou and Shenzhen for blood transfusions, because there were few blood collection centers in Dongguan," he says.

"So, I thought, 'why not give blood and save people?' At that time, information on how to donate blood was lacking."

Qi says the only ways he knew to give blood were to go to the blood center in Dongguan or get lucky and spot a blood donation van on the street, when he was carrying his ID papers.

Qi first gave blood in a blood donation vehicle in Dongguan.

"When I arrived, there were people lining up to give blood," he says.

"A blood test was done to make sure I did not have hepatitis B or high blood pressure, then my blood was drawn. I was afraid of infections at first, but when I noticed that every needle was disposed of, I realized there was nothing to worry about."

Qi received national awards in 2006 and 2008 for donating blood but has never needed a transfusion or undergone surgery himself.

One benefit of donating so much blood, however, was that his mother's transfusion fees were covered when she underwent surgery in 2003 and 2004.

"Incentives are not the reason most people give blood," Qi says.

"I do this because it feels great knowing that I can save people's lives. I cannot think of a reason for not doing that."