The ABCs of Donating A, B, A/B and O

What All Donors Need To Know Before Rolling Up Their Sleeves

By Christy Peters, External Communications Manager, Biomedical Services

The need for lifesaving blood and platelets is constant. In fact, every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs a blood transfusion. And your contribution is important for a stable and reliable blood supply. But before you schedule your appointment to donate blood, here is information to ensure you’re prepared for a successful donation.

To donate blood, you must be:

  • At least 17 years-old in most states, or 16 years-old with parental consent if allowed by state law (such as Ohio).
  • You must weigh at least 110 pounds
  • You must be in good general health and feeling well on the day of your donation.

Prior to your blood donation, make sure you drink plenty of water and eat a healthy meal. When you come to give, you will also be asked to show a donor card, driver’s license, or other form(s) of ID.

The entire blood donation process takes about an hour from start to finish. It consists of :

  • Registration
  • A mini-physical
  • The actual donation
  • Refreshments!

The actual blood donation takes about 8-10 minutes and you will donate one pint of blood (the average person has 10-12 pints). Your one pint consists of three components, red blood cells, platelets and plasma and each one can be given to a different patient based on their need. With each blood donation you have the potential to help save up to three lives!

Join the lifesaving mission of the Red Cross and make an appointment now to give blood. Download the free Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Celebrating a Red Cross Pioneer During Black History Month

By Christie Peters, External Communications Manager, Biomedical Services

Dr-Charles-Drew

During Black History Month this February, the Red Cross celebrates the legacy of blood-banking pioneer Dr. Charles Drew.  Dr. Drew was an African-American surgeon who became the medical director of the first Red Cross blood bank in 1941. Drew’s research about the storage and shipment of blood plasma proved that blood could be stored for transfusions. During World War II, at the military’s request, Drew helped the Red Cross initiate a national blood program that collected 13.3 million pints of blood for use by the armed forces.

Donors of all blood types and ethnic backgrounds are encouraged to give to help ensure blood and platelet donations reflect the diversity of the patients who rely on them. Certain blood types are unique to specific racial and ethnic groups. Red blood cells carry markers called antigens on their surface that determine one’s blood type. There are more than 600 known antigens, and some are unique to specific racial and ethnic groups. Blood must be matched very closely for patients with rare blood types or those who need repeated transfusions. Patients are less likely to have complications from blood donated by someone of a similar ethnicity.

  • Every day, volunteer blood and platelet donors across the country are needed to help save lives. The Red Cross must collect more than 13,000 blood and platelet donations every day for patients at about 2,600 hospitals and transfusion centers nationwide. Eligible donors are urged to make an appointment to give now by using the Blood Donor App, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Firm Steps Up During Urgent Appeal for Blood Donations

You can’t miss the banner as you drive just east of downtown Cleveland on I-90.

It’s huge.

IMG_5153

The timing of the message, hanging on a wall facing north at Jergens Inc. couldn’t be better. There is an urgent need for blood and platelet donors, due to a donation shortage this winter.  But even if there wasn’t a shortage, that banner would still be hanging, urging motorists to become blood donors.

“We hang the banner at this time every year,” said Jack Schron, President and CEO of Jergens Inc.  They also hold employee blood drives, 4 or 5 a year, about every 56 days – which is the amount of time donors must wait before giving blood again.

“It’s just the right thing to do, a way to give back,” said Schron, who added, “A lot of people can write a check, but as I tell my kids, only you can decide whether to give your blood and your time.”

Schron shared his motivation for hosting regular blood drives as he donated another pint.  His 83rd.  The CEO of the Red Cross of Northeast Ohio, Mike Parks, joined Schron as they both gave the gift of life.

 

“We want to recognize loyalty,” said Parks.  “When you look at the culture of this company, the 25-year employees, it’s evident that this company really values loyalty.”

Parks gave a “Challenge Coin” to long-time Human Resources Director, Kathy Puskas, for organizing the blood drives at Jergens for the past 25 years.

IMG_5209

Mike Parks gives a Challenge Coin to Kathy Puskas, long-time Human Resources Director at Jergens Inc. for organizing more than 100 blood drives at the Cleveland manufacturing plant

As we recently noted, severe winter weather, in addition to seasonal illnesses and hectic holiday schedules, have collectively contributed to about 28,000 fewer donations than what was needed in November and December. Blood and platelet donations are being distributed to hospitals as fast as they come in. The Red Cross must collect more than 13,000 blood and platelet donations every day for patients at about 2,600 hospitals and transfusion centers nationwide.

“The Red Cross is grateful to Jergens, and so many companies throughout Northeast Ohio who host regular blood drives throughout the year,” said Christy Peters, External Communications Manager for the Northern Ohio Region.  “If they did not open their doors and allow us to have blood drives, we could not continue to meet the needs of local hospitals. Every blood drive sponsor is a vital part of our lifesaving mission.”

Eligible donors can schedule an appointment to donate by using the free Blood Donor App, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

“Hey, if you can do it,” says Schron, “go for it!”

The Need Never Ends

Red Cross issues urgent call for blood and platelet donors

This January, National Blood Donor Month, the American Red Cross has an urgent need for blood and platelet donors of all blood types to make an appointment to give now and help address a winter blood donation shortage. Severe winter weather, in addition to seasonal illnesses and hectic holiday schedules have collectively contributed to more than 28,000 fewer donations than what was needed in November and December.

There is a critical need for the following blood and donation types right now:

  • Platelets: The clotting portion of blood primarily given to cancer patients during treatment and always in great demand.
  • Type O negative: The blood type that can be transfused to almost everyone and is what doctors reach for in trauma situations.
  • Type B negative: The blood type that can be transfused to type B Rh-positive and negative patients.
  • Type AB: The plasma type that can be transfused to almost everyone and can be donated through a platelet or plasma donation, where available, or during a regular blood donation.

Right now, blood and platelet donations are being distributed to hospitals as fast as they come in. The Red Cross must collect more than 13,000 blood and platelet donations every day for patients at about 2,600 hospitals and transfusion centers nationwide.

Eligible donors can find a blood platelet donation opportunity and schedule an appointment to donate by using the free Blood Donor App, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). Donation appointments and completion of a RapidPass are encouraged to help speed up the donation process. RapidPass lets donors complete the pre-donation reading and answer the health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, by visiting redcrossblood.org/rapidpass from the convenience of a mobile device or computer, or through the Blood Donor App.

Ways to Brighten Black Friday

By: Sue Wilson, Volunteer Leader and Board Member

Black Friday. The kick off to what is suppose to be the most joyous time of the year. Yet, a trip to any mall parking lot or big box retailer shows anything but joy. Black Friday can be a dark day, exemplifying the worst of consumerism in the holidays, and by the end of it we often hear some dreadful news story about customers rushing into stores, battling over a limited number of “door buster” specials. Sales consultant, Steven A McQueen, tweeted: “Black Friday is the day we trample people for things we don’t need, the day after being thankful for what we have.”

We have been convinced, through a bombardment of advertising messages, that the holiday season is all about MORE. Spending more money on more presents to fill our spaces with more stuff that we’ll be paying off for a long time.

If stepping back from the consumerism of gift giving sounds good to you, here are four suggestions to bring some meaning back to the holidays:

  1. Give the gift of time. Volunteer with an organization you believe in. Every single day, the Red Cross helps people in emergencies. Whether it’s one displaced family, thousands of disaster victims, or providing care and comfort to an ill or injured service member or veteran or support to a military family member, our vital work is made possible by people like you. It is through the time and care of ordinary people that we can do extraordinary things. Click here for information about becoming a Red Cross volunteer.
  2. Give something that means something. Honor a friend or family member with a gift that helps those in need. When you donate to the Red Cross you are helping people who face emergencies every day rebuild their lives. Donations can help provide safe shelter, food, emergency relief supplies, emotional support and health services to people in need. To make a tax-deductible donation, visit redcross.org/gifts and choose from a variety of symbolic gifts that give back to the community, or call 1-800-RED CROSS to support Red Cross services.
  3. Give something practical. If you still enjoy giving traditional gifts, you can shop online at the Red Cross Store and give a practical gift; the gift of preparedness for emergencies, with first aid kits, a hand-crank radio that can charge your cell phone, water bottles and more.
  4. Donate Blood. The holidays are a hectic time with upcoming travel, family gatherings and festive events. But hospital patients don’t get a holidays from needing lifesaving blood donations. To make an appointment to donate blood or platelets visit  redcrossblood.org.

Brighten up Black Friday. Give …rather than buy.

Donate Blood and Platelets During National Preparedness Month

As the American Red Cross responds to wildfires and historic hurricanes, eligible donors are reminded that giving blood or platelet donations during National Preparedness Month in September is one way to help ensure the Red Cross is prepared to respond to patient emergencies across the country every day.

IMG_3757Hurricane Irma has forced the cancellation of dozens of Red Cross blood drives in the Southeast, resulting in more than 2,100 uncollected blood and platelet donations. Natural disasters like hurricanes can disrupt blood drives and prevent donors from giving, but hospital patients still depend on lifesaving transfusions. Volunteer blood and platelet donors are the only source for blood products needed by hospital patients.

Blood Donors

Individuals in parts of the country unaffected by Hurricane Irma are encouraged to give blood or platelets to help ensure a sufficient blood supply. All blood types are currently needed. Appointments can be made by using the Blood Donor App, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS. To help reduce wait times, donors are encouraged to make appointments and use RapidPass® to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questions online, on the day of their donation, from a computer or mobile device at redcrossblood.org/rapidpass.

As a thank-you, those who come to donate blood or platelets through Sept. 30, 2017, will receive a coupon for a free haircut at participating Sport Clips locations. More information is available at redcrossblood.org/sport-clips.

Upcoming blood donation opportunities:

Ashland County

9/18/2017: 12:30 p.m. – 4 p.m., Trinity Lutheran Church, 508 Center Street

9/23/2017: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Peace Lutheran Church, 1360 Smith Road

9/26/2017: 8:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., Crestview High School, 1575 SR 96

Jeromesville

9/18/2017: 3 p.m. – 7 p.m., Jeromesville United Methodist Church, 40 North Street

Loudonville

9/25/2017: 3 p.m. – 8 p.m., Mohicanville Community Church, 347 State Route 95

9/27/2017: 2 p.m. – 6 p.m., Loudonville Lions Club, 643 Wooster Road

Holmes County

Millersburg

9/19/2017: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., West Holmes Middle School, 10901 State Route 39

9/21/2017: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Paint Valley Parts, Ltd, 10850 County Road 320

9/25/2017: 3 p.m. – 7 p.m., Bowman Harness, 6928 County Road 77

9/27/2017: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Yoder Lumber Company, 4515 Township Road 367

Nashville

9/29/2017: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Nashville Church of Christ, 13457 State Route 39

Medina County

Brunswick

9/16/2017: 9:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m., Brunswick Community Recreation & Fitness Center, 3637 Center Road

9/17/2017: 1 p.m. – 5 p.m., Xerxes Athletics, 424 Pearl Road

9/18/2017: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Brunswick United Methodist Church, 1395 Pearl Road

Medina

9/19/2017: 11:30 a.m. – 4 p.m., Western Reserve Masonic Community, 4931 Nettleton Road

9/19/2017: 4:30 p.m. – 9 p.m., Fenn Elementary School, 320 N. Spring Grove

9/22/2017: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., Medina Community Recreation Center, 855 Weymouth Road

9/23/2017: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., Living Hope Church, 6628 Wooster Pike

Seville

9/18/2017: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Seville United Methodist Church, 74 West Main Street

Summit County

Akron

9/16/2017: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

9/17/2017: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

9/18/2017: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

9/19/2017: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

9/20/2017: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

9/21/2017: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., Cleveland Clinic Akron General, 1 Akron General Avenue

9/21/2017: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

9/22/2017: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

9/23/2017: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

9/24/2017: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

9/25/2017: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

9/26/2017: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

9/27/2017: 8:30 a.m. – 2 p.m., East Community Learning Center, 80 Brittain Road

9/27/2017: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

9/28/2017: 8 a.m. – 2 p.m., Manchester High School, 437 West Nimisila Road

9/28/2017: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

9/28/2017: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Our Lady of the Elms High School, 1375 West Exchange Street

9/29/2017: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

9/30/2017: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Summit Blood Donation Center, 501 W. Market Street

Barberton

9/21/2017: 10:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., BWX Technologies, 91 Stirling Avenue

Copley

9/25/2017: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., The HUB Community Center, 3676 Community Lane, Suite 100

Cuyahoga Falls

9/18/2017: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., St Lukes Lutheran Church, 2121 Sixth Street

Hudson

9/27/2017: 12 p.m. – 6 p.m., Barlow Community Center, 41 South Oviatt

Norton

9/18/2017: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Johnson United Methodist Church, 3409 Johnson Road

Tallmadge

9/18/2017: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Our Lady of Victory, 73 North Ave

9/22/2017: 7:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., Tallmadge High School, 140 N. Munroe Road

9/30/2017: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., Tallmadge Library, 90 Community Rd

Twinsburg

9/25/2017: 10:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Twinsburg Public Library, 10050 Ravenna Road

Wayne County

New Pittsburg

9/19/2017: 3 p.m. – 7 p.m., St Peter Lutheran Church, 9451 Ashland Rd.

Orrville

9/20/2017: 12 p.m. – 6 p.m., Student Life Center, 1901 Smucker Rd.

9/21/2017: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Kingsway Christian School, 11138 Old Lincoln Way E.

Shreve

9/25/2017: 1:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., American Legion Post 67, 10094 Shreve Rd.

Wooster

9/16/2017: 8 a.m. – 1 p.m., American Red Cross Wayne County Chapter, 244 West South St.

9/26/2017: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., The Ohio State University Agricultural Technical Institute, 1328 Dover Rd.

9/28/2017: 10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., College of Wooster, 1189 Beall Ave.

9/28/2017: 3 p.m. – 8 p.m., College of Wooster, 1189 Beall Ave.

More information about how the Red Cross is responding to hurricanes Harvey and Irma, the western wildfires and other disasters is available at redcross.org.

 How to donate blood

Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.

Who Blood and Platelet Donations Help

Arthur Bourget and his daughter EmmaBlood shortages could lead to delays in patient care, something Arthur Bourget learned firsthand after being diagnosed with leukemia in July 2007. When he arrived for his second blood transfusion, he was told the blood he needed was not available. He waited eight hours for blood to arrive and to receive the transfusion he needed that day.

“One thing that I committed to my wife was that I was going to beat leukemia, no matter what, and I was going to do that,” said Bourget. “But what I wasn’t going to be able to do was survive without the blood that I needed.”

Bourget went into remission following a successful treatment plan, which included 28 blood and 34 platelet transfusions. He has been a faithful advocate for blood donations ever since.

“If it wasn’t for the generosity of volunteer blood donors, I would not be here today,” he said. “My daughter would not have a father, and my wife would not have a husband. Thank you and please give blood. You may never know the life you have saved, but I guarantee they will never forget you.”

How to help

To schedule an appointment to donate, use the Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). Donation appointments and completion of a RapidPass online health history questionnaire are encouraged to help reduce the time it takes to donate.

As a special thank you, those who come out to give blood or platelets with the Red Cross July 26 through Aug. 31 will be emailed a $5 Target eGiftCard™.*

What to know about giving blood

To make an appointment or more information, simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.

Blood donors can now save time at their next donation by using RapidPass to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, prior to arriving at the blood drive. To get started and learn more, visit redcrossblood.org/RapidPass and follow the instructions on the site.

 

* Restrictions apply. Additional information and details are available at redcrossblood.org/summer. The Bullseye Design, Target and Target GiftCard are registered trademarks of Target Brands, Inc. Terms and conditions are applied to gift cards. Target is not a participating partner in or sponsor of this offer.