Asian Journal of Transfusion Science
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Year : 2013  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 130-134

Looking to the future, working on the present. Intention to donate blood and risk behavior: A study on adolescents

1 Laboratorio di Psicologia Sociale Applicata, Universitą Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, L.go Gemelli 1, 20123 Milan, Italy
2 AVIS (Italian Association of Volunteer Blood Donors), Viale E, Forlanini 23, 20134 Milan, Italy

Correspondence Address:
Alfieri Sara
Laboratorio di Psicologia Sociale Applicata, Universitą Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, L.go Gemelli 1, 20123 Milan
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0973-6247.115573

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Background: The aim of this work was to investigate adolescents' propensity to donate blood, the incidence in this population of risk behaviors that limit and restrict the potential for blood donation, thus reducing the number of possible subjects suitable for donation, and the link between propensity to donate and healthy lifestyles. Materials and Methods: Adolescents were asked to complete an anonymous self-report questionnaire during class time. The questionnaire included ad hoc items designed to investigate the intention to donate blood and behaviors traditionally considered to put adolescents' health "at risk." Participants were 201 students from northern Italy (range 12-19, M = 17.98, SD = 1.82; 38.9% male, 61.1% female). Results: About half of respondents perceived that they were able to donate blood and could overcome any obstacle that might prevent them from doing so. Some of the examined risk behaviors were widespread in the population under consideration. The linear regressions run show that there is no link between the propensity to give blood and a tendency to engage in healthy lifestyles. Conclusion: The study shows that adolescents demonstrate an interest in blood donation; however, it shows a real lack of "action" to make it happen: there is, indeed, a serious lack of attention to matters related to healthy lifestyles. In fact, adolescents are not aware of how to act to access the world of donation, with the risk that they present themselves at blood donation centers and are then found to be unfit to donate. The research offers many suggestions and implications.

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