This Man’s Blood Saved 2.4 Million Babies – He is not The God or A Doctor 

Have you ever wondered how one person can save 2.4 million babies without even being a doctor? James Harrison, known as “The Man with the Golden Arm,” has saved more than 2.4 million babies in his lifetime. 

His blood contains a rare antibody that can prevent Rhesus disease, a condition that can be fatal to unborn babies.  By donating his blood over 1,000 times, Harrison has saved more than 2.4 million lives. 

Do you want to know what inspired him to donate so much blood throughout his life?

Last Blood donation

James Harrison was born on December 27, 1936, in Junee, New South Wales, Australia. When he was 14 years old, he underwent major chest surgery. 

After the surgery, he needed 13 liters of blood to save his life. Thanks to the generous people who donated blood, his life was saved. 

Grateful for this gift, Harrison promised himself, that he would become a blood donor once he turned 18.

Young James Harrison
Young James Harrison | Image Credit @ Rhogam

The Golden Blood 

Harrison started donating blood in 1954, just as he had promised. After a few donations, doctors discovered that his blood contained something extraordinary. A rare antibody against the D Rh group antigen. 

These antibodies were incredibly important because they could be used to make Anti-D immunoglobulin, a treatment that prevents Rhesus disease. 

Rhesus disease is a condition where a pregnant woman’s blood attacks her unborn baby’s blood cells, which can lead to severe anemia, brain damage, or even death in newborns. Harrison’s plasma was used to create this life-saving treatment, helping countless mothers and babies.

Contributions of Golden Arm

James Harrison didn’t just stop at a few donations. He became a founding donor of New South Wales’ Rh Program in 1969. It was one of the first programs of its kind in the world. 

Over the years, he made his 1,000th donation in May 2011. On May 11, 2018, he made his 1,173rd and final donation, as Australian policy requires donors to stop at age 81. 

Through his unwavering dedication, Harrison’s donations have saved an estimated 2.4 million babies’ lives.

He is a hero to Australia 

Harrison was not just a donor but also a hero fighting for blood donors. He was critical of plans to open Australia’s plasma donation to foreign corporations, fearing it would discourage volunteer donations.

In 1999, he was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia. He was also nominated in the New South Wales Local Hero division of the Australian of the Year awards in 2011.

Credit @ Creator David Gray Credit Reuters Landov

Despite his incredible achievements, Harrison remained humble. He often downplayed his heroism, saying he was simply doing what he could to help.
He hoped others would continue to donate blood and carry on his legacy. Interestingly, research is underway to replicate his unique antibodies using monoclonal antibodies, a project nicknamed “James in a Jar.”


James Harrison’s dedication to blood donation has profoundly impacted public health, saving millions of lives. His story reminds us of the power of a person’s actions and the difference one can make. If you’ve ever thought about donating blood, remember James Harrison and consider how you can help save lives.

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