Donating blood: a meta-analytic review of self-reported motivators and deterrents

Transfus Med Rev. 2011 Oct;25(4):317-34. doi: 10.1016/j.tmrv.2011.04.005. Epub 2011 Jun 8.


Although research on blood donor motivation abounds, most studies have typically focused on small sets of variables, used different terminology to label equivalent constructs, and have not attempted to generalize findings beyond their individual settings. The current study sought to synthesize past findings into a unified taxonomy of blood donation drivers and deterrents and to estimate the prevalence of each factor across the worldwide population of donors and eligible nondonors. Primary studies were collected, and cross-validated categories of donation motivators and deterrents were developed. Proportions of first-time, repeat, lapsed, apheresis, and eligible nondonors endorsing each category were calculated. In terms of motivators, first-time and repeat donors most frequently cited convenience, prosocial motivation, and personal values; apheresis donors similarly cited the latter 2 motivators and money. Conversely, lapsed donors more often cited collection agency reputation, perceived need for donation, and marketing communication as motivators. In terms of deterrents, both donors and nondonors most frequently referred to low self-efficacy to donate, low involvement, inconvenience, absence of marketing communication, ineffective incentives, lack of knowledge about donating, negative service experiences, and fear. The integration of past findings has yielded a comprehensive taxonomy of factors influencing blood donation and has provided insight into the prevalence of each factor across multiple stages of donors' careers. Implications for collection agencies are discussed.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Altruism
  • Blood Banks
  • Blood Component Removal / economics
  • Blood Component Removal / psychology
  • Blood Donors / psychology*
  • Fear
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Knowledge
  • Male
  • Marketing
  • Middle Aged
  • Motivation*
  • Self Efficacy
  • Self Report
  • Social Values
  • Young Adult