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It's International Plasma Awareness Week (IPAW) and BPL Plasma (2217 34th St & 2415-A, Main St) is celebrating with special events, deals, and of course, important information about the need for human plasma in many medical procedures.

It's quite possible you've been the beneficiary of someone's plasma donation, and might not even be aware of it. For instance, Rh- mothers (mothers with a negative blood type) with a Rh+ baby need plasma to accommodate their RH incompatibility. It's possible your kid needed it, or that you were that kid. Either way, plasma saves a whole lot of babies.

Plasma is also used to treat burns, liver conditions, shock, pediatric HIV, animal bites, trauma, organ transplants, major surgery, cardiopulmonary issues, hepatitis, autoimmune diseases, and more. It really is a miracle for the people who need it.

All week, BPL Plasma will reward donors with a bonus $5 "coupon" for their 5th donation; that is, you'll get an extra $5 on your 5th donation, while these coupons last. On Wednesday, 10/7, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., donors will receive a goodie bag on top of their payout. and all week donors are encouraged to guess how many candies are in the IPAW candy jar for a chance to win the jar and its contents.

If you've never donated plasma, I encourage you to try it and see if it works for you. The payouts really are generous, and you get that money almost instantaneously. Additionally, both locations of BPL are open 7 days a week, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., making it easy to fit into almost any schedule. New donors and donors who have not donated in the last six months will be paid $60 for each of their first five donations during the month of October, meaning you can make $300 in as little as two and a half weeks. That's really as good as taking on a part-time job, but with way less time committed and the schedule is set by you.

Whether you start donating to save up for a PS5 or to save a burn victim or a baby, you are doing something wonderful for yourself and for your fellow humans. I encourage you to try it and enjoy all your well-earned cash.