Urgent need for blood donors

Article Published: Sep. 2, 2010 | Modified: Sep. 7, 2011
Urgent need for blood donors

The American Red Cross Carolinas Blood Services Region has issued an urgent call for blood donors.

The Red Cross closely monitors national and local blood supplies to ensure donations are keeping pace with hospital need for blood products in order to meet ongoing and emergency patient care.

"There is a critical need for blood donors now," said Joyce H. Brendel, chief executive officer for the Carolinas Blood Services Region of the Red Cross. "This summer, we have had a particularly difficult time recruiting enough blood donors to meet the requirements of our community's hospitals and the patients they serve."

Meeting this need is particularly challenging since the extremely high temperatures are keeping donors inside, most schools are not in session to hold blood drives and we are experiencing a high number of donors who are unable to keep their appointments. In the Carolinas Region, the Red Cross has seen approximately 13 percent fewer donors than expected.

Donors with all blood types are needed, but especially those with type O negative. Red Cross officials say type O negative donors can make the difference between an adequate blood supply and a shortage. That's because type O negative blood can be transfused to patients with any blood type, and is most readily given to patients in emergency and trauma situations.

Every day, more than 39,000 pints of blood are needed for patients in the United States. Blood is used for the treatment of cancer patients, people with blood disorders, premature babies, transplant recipients, trauma victims and more. Each whole blood donation can help save up to three lives.

"We urge people to make and keep an appointment to donate blood now," Brendel said. "Chances are, someone is counting on you right now for their very life."

Upcoming Drives

? Friday, Sept. 3, 1:30 to 6 p.m. at Boone Mall (1180 Blowing Rock Road) For an appointment, call Meredith at (878) 264-7286.

? Tuesday, Sept. 7, 1:30 to 6 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Express/Watauga Community Drive (1855 Blowing Rock Road), sponsored by Optimist Club. For appointment or more information, contact the chapter at (828) 264-8226 or visit http://www.membersforlife.org/cbsr/schedule, click on enter sponsor code "5740."

? Wednesday, Sept. 8, 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Deerfield Ridge Assisted Living (287 Bamboo Road). Contact Elizabeth Young at (828) 264-0336 for an appointment.

? Friday, Sept. 24, 3 to 7:30 p.m. at Cove Creek School (930 Vanderpool Road). For an appointment, call the school at (828) 297-2781.

? Friday, Sept. 24, 12 to 4:30 p.m. at Earth Fare (178 W. King St.). For appointment or more information, contact John Carmichael at the store (828) 263-8138.

To schedule an appointment to donate, call Revonda Wood at (336) 413-3286 or email (woodrd@usa.redcross.org) for more information. Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental permission), meet weight and height requirements (110 pounds or more, depending on their height) and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood.

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