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Health IT Roundup—Facebook plans to launch blood donation tool in the U.S.; Healthcare coalition lays out AI policy recommendations

February 08, 2019 / Heather Landi

Facebook is gearing up to launch a feature, already available in four countries, in the U.S. market that will help coordinate blood donations, according to Business Insider. Launched in 2017 in India, Facebook's blood donation tool has expanded to Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Brazil. More than 35 million Facebook users have signed up. The current version of the tool enables users to interact directly with one another to coordinate blood donations. Local experts in India raised serious concerns about the tool, including that it contributes to the black market for blood. In the U.S., the tool will be available to organizations like hospitals, blood banks, and the American Red Cross to put out requests for donations on the social media platform. Facebook users who identify themselves as donors will be notified when there's a local need for blood.