The effects of a phone call prompt on subsequent blood donation among first-time donors

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A strategy used by blood centers to retain donors is to place phone call reminders. However, among first-time donors, no studies have tested the effect of this strategy. This was the aim of this study among individuals who had recently given their first lifetime blood donation.


A quasi-experimental study using a nonequivalent control group was adopted; participants in the control group were donors with blood types B+ and AB+, since these individuals are not phoned by the blood agency. A total of 1604 first-time donors aged 18 to 70 years from the province of Quebec, Canada, were assigned to the experimental (n = 870) or the control (n = 734) group. Participants in the experimental group were phoned a few days before they had a new opportunity to give blood while those in the control condition were not phoned.


In the experimental condition, 48.3% of the donors attempted to give blood during the 12-month follow-up period compared to 38.0% in the control condition. The hazards of the first blood donation attempt among donors who were phoned were 32% higher compared to the hazards of those who were not phoned (p = 0.0004).


The results of this study indicate that a first phone call reminder about the upcoming opportunity to give blood again has a significant positive effect on return rates among first-time donors.

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