Tags: james harrison | blood | donor | saving | babies

James Harrison: Blood Donor Credited With Saving 2M Babies

Image: James Harrison: Blood Donor Credited With Saving 2M Babies
(Australian Red Cross Blood Service)

By    |   Thursday, 11 Jun 2015 12:28 PM

During his 60 years of donating blood plasma, James Harrison has been credited with saving the lives of 2 million babies in Australia and around the world because his blood contains an antibody to Rhesus disease.

Rhesus is a potentially deadly condition derived from a negative blood-type mother conceiving a positive blood-type fetus, according to People.com. Doctors realized long ago that 78-year-old Harrison’s blood held an antibody that fought Rhesus disease.

 


By using Harrison’s blood, doctors were able to create a special injection which shields babies from the disease.

When Harrison was 14 he underwent an operation and required donated blood to stay alive. Thankful for his donors' kindness, he vowed to donate blood himself.

This week CNN aired a profile on Harrison’s blood donations and his fame has grown even more.

"Australia was one of the first countries to discover a blood donor with this antibody," explained Australian Red Cross Blood Service spokesperson Jemma Falkenmire. "James has effectively helped babies in Australia, but he's [also] helped babies around the world."

Although Harrison is being honored for his actions, he told CNN that every time he donates blood he still has to look away as the needle penetrates his arm.

"Never once have I watched the needle go in my arm," said Harrison. "I look at the ceiling or the nurses, maybe talk to them a bit, but never once have I watched the needle go in my arm. I can't stand the sight of blood, and I can't stand pain."

Recognized as "the man with the golden arm," Harrison donated his record beating 1000th blood donation in May 2011.

"I could say it's the only record that I hope is broken, because if they do, they have donated a thousand donations," he told TEN News



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During his 60 years of donating blood plasma, James Harrison has been credited with saving the lives of 2 million babies in Australia and around the world because his blood contains an antibody to Rhesus disease.
james harrison, blood, donor, saving, babies
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2015-28-11
Thursday, 11 Jun 2015 12:28 PM
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