On the wrong side of the hospital room – a nurse becomes the patient

By Doug Bardwell, American Red Cross volunteer

Kristin Palocko  had been engaged for a year and was looking forward to her first wedding dress fitting in 2017. Working the night shift as a critical care nurse, she was often tired, but suddenly she was more fatigued than normal.

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“That night, a doctor came into my room at the emergency department and told me that I have a bleeding disorder called thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP),” recalled Kristin.

With TTP, blood clots form in small blood vessels throughout the body. The clots can limit or prevent the oxygen-rich blood from reaching the various organs that need it.

The condition is extremely rare, affecting maybe only two people in a million. “We barely touched on it in nursing school…it’s that rare. Luckily, with so many great hospitals in our area, it’s no longer fatal.”

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Prior to the 1980s, the disease was 97 percent fatal. Now with early detection and with plasma exchange, it’s considered very treatable. Treatment can last days or even months.

“This started me on a roller coaster of a 12-day hospital stay, a central dialysis line in my neck, and multiple units of red blood cells and plasma.” Kristin received 330 units of plasma, taking four hours each for 10 of those 12 days.

“It was an eye-opening experience being on the receiving end of treatment and being on the other side of the monitors. As a nurse, I realize the value of each unit of blood. It’s like liquid gold for our patients.”

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With three months medical leave, routine doctor’s appointments, countless blood draws and continual prayers, Kristin’s condition is still stable today. TTP could come back at any time, but some people have gone 17 years without a relapse.

“Less than six months after diagnosis, I married my best friend, Brad. Ever since I’ve been diagnosed, he’s been a frequent blood donor.”

“Two years later, I am feeling blessed for everyone’s thoughts and prayers through it all—especially the blood donors. They have helped me, and numerous others, in our time of greatest need with their generous donations. Without those willing to give of their time (and blood) there would not be treatment for TTP.”

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Kristin goes to Cuyahoga Valley Church and recently saw the sign there that volunteers were needed for an upcoming American Red Cross blood drive.

“After all that plasma I used during my treatment, I felt guilty, and I realized I needed to do something to give back. So, between shifts I went to the church during the blood drive and I volunteered.”

If you’d like to volunteer at a blood drive, we would love to have you. Volunteers are invaluable to the daily operation of the Northeast Ohio Region of the American Red Cross and are truly the heart and soul of the organization. Click here to register as a volunteer or sign up here to become a donor.

Edited by Glenda Bogar, American Red Cross volunteer

Give blood: Help patients in need this summer

July 12, 2019- With the weather in Northeast Ohio heating up and families away enjoying vacations,  there are fewer blood drives being held. This creates a difficult situation for the blood supply, and the American Red Cross is facing an emergency need for blood and platelet donors after a significant shortfall in blood donations during the Independence Day holiday week and ongoing challenges finding new blood donors.

Following the Fourth of July week, about 450 fewer blood drives were organized by businesses and other community groups than during a typical week as people across the country celebrated the holiday with activities and travel. This led to about 17,000 fewer blood donations than needed for patients in a single week, causing the Red Cross to now have less than a three-day supply of most blood types available – and less than a two-day supply of type O blood – for patients. At least a five-day supply is desired.

give now

Eligible individuals are urged to give now to help avoid delays in lifesaving medical care for patients this summer.

Don’t wait – help now:

  1. Make an appointment to give blood or platelets by downloading the free Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
  2. Let your friends and family know there is a #BloodEmergency and ask them to give now.
  3. Bring someone to donate with you.

Blood transfusion is the fourth most common inpatient hospital procedure in the U.S., and these blood products can only come from volunteer donors. Yet, only 3 out of 100 people in the U.S. give blood. It’s crucial that the Red Cross has a sufficient blood supply on hand to meet the needs of patients every day and to be prepared for emergencies that require significant volumes of donated blood products

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Upcoming Northeast Ohio blood donation opportunities:

To help with the blood supply crisis, all across the Red Cross of Northeast Ohio region, there are blood donation opportunities, ensuring there is a blood drive near you:

Ashtabula County:

Andover

7/16/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Andover Christian Church, 200 Stillman Ave

7/20/2019: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m., Andover United Methodist Church, 181 South Main Street

Ashtabula

7/17/2019: 2 p.m. – 8 p.m., Community Counseling Center, 2801 C Court

7/23/2019: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., Kent State University, 3300 Lake Rd. West

7/25/2019: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m., Ashtabula County Medical Center, 2420 Lake Ave.

7/31/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., YMCA, 263 W. Prospect

Conneaut

7/24/2019: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 876 Grove St.

Geneva

7/21/2019: 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., Peoples Church, 300 South Ridge East

7/22/2019: 1:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Assumption Church, 594 West Main Street

Jefferson

7/18/2019: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., Ashtabula Cnty Commissioners, 25 West Jefferson Street

7/19/2019: 1:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m., Jefferson Church of the Nazarene, 55 E. Satin Street

Cuyahoga County:

Beachwood

7/19/2019: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Beachwood Community Center, 25451 Fairmount Blvd

7/20/2019: 10:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Beachwood Public Library, 25501 Shaker Blvd.

7/23/2019: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Cleveland Clinic Administrative Campus, 25875 Science Park Drive, Building 1

7/23/2019: 12 p.m. – 5:30 p.m., Cleveland Clinic, 26900 Cedar Road

Berea

7/27/2019: 8 a.m. – 2 p.m., Berea Recreation Center, 451 Front St

Brecksville

7/18/2019: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Brecksville Community Center, One Community Drive

Chagrin Falls

7/16/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., United Methodist Church, 20 South Franklin Street

Cleveland

7/13/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/14/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/14/2019: 8 a.m. – 12 p.m., St Leo The Great Church, 4940 Broadview Road

7/15/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/16/2019: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Lutheran Hospital, 1730 West 25th Street

7/16/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/17/2019: 6 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., Dave McCall Union Hall, 3421 Independence Road

7/17/2019: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., Dave’s Market MidTown, 1929 East 61st street

7/17/2019: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., Dave McCall Union Hall, 3421 Independence Road

7/17/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/18/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/19/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/19/2019: 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., Fairview Hospital, 18101 Lorain Ave.

7/20/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/21/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/21/2019: 8:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., Our Lady of Angels Church, 3644 Rocky River Drive

7/21/2019: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., University Circle United Methodist Church, University Circle United Methodist Church, 1919 East 107th

7/22/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/23/2019: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Center, 9500 Euclid Ave.

7/23/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/24/2019: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, 3900 Wildlife Way

7/24/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/25/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/26/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/26/2019: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., Cuyahoga County Administration Building, 2079 E. 9th Street, 4th Floor

7/27/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/27/2019: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., Omega Psi Phi, 15435 St. Clair

7/28/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/29/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/29/2019: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., Cuyahoga Community College Metro Campus, 2900 Community College Ave.

7/30/2019: 12:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., LifeBanc, 4775 Richmond Road

7/30/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

7/31/2019: 8:30 a.m. – 3 p.m., One Cleveland Center, 1375 E.9th St., Building Management

7/31/2019: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Carl B Stokes Court House, 801 West Superior Ave

7/31/2019: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., Galleria Erieview Plaza, 1301 East 9th Street

7/31/2019: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Frank J Lausche State Office Building, 615 Superior Avenue N.W.

7/31/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Warzel Blood Donation Center, 3747 Euclid Avenue

Cleveland Heights

7/15/2019: 12 p.m. – 6 p.m., Cleveland Hts Library, 2345 Lee Road

7/31/2019: 8 a.m. – 3 p.m., Cleveland Heights Community Center, 1 Monticello Blvd.

Fairview Park

7/24/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Fairview Recreation Center, 21225 Lorain Road

Garfield Heights

7/22/2019: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Garfield Hts Civic Center, 5407 Turney Road

Highland Hills

7/25/2019: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., Metropolitan Plaza, 22901 Millcreek Boulevard

Independence

7/23/2019: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Park Center Building I, 6100 Oak Tree Blvd

7/29/2019: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., Independence Community Center, 6363 Selig Drive

Lakewood

7/19/2019: 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., O’Neill Healthcare- Lakewood, 1381 Bunts Rd.

7/22/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Lakewood Womens Club Pavilion, 14532 Lake Ave.

7/29/2019: 3 p.m. – 8 p.m., Lakewood YMCA, 16915 Detroit Rd.

Mayfield Heights

7/16/2019: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Hillcrest Hospital, 6780 Mayfield Road

Mayfield Village

7/17/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Mayfield Village Civic Center, 6622 Wilson Mills Rd.

7/25/2019: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Hilton Garden Inn, 700 Beta Drive

North Olmsted

7/19/2019: 10:45 a.m. – 3:45 p.m., North Olmsted Community Cabin, 28114 Lorain Rd.

North Royalton

7/30/2019: 1:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Cuyahoga County Library North Royalton Branch, 5071 Wallings Rd

Olmsted Falls

7/25/2019: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Cuyahoga County Library Olmsted Falls Branch, 8100 Mapleway Dr

Parma

7/13/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/14/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/15/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/16/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/17/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/17/2019: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Cuyahoga County Library Parma-Snow, 2121 Snow Road

7/18/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/19/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/20/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/21/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/22/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/23/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/24/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/25/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/26/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/27/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/28/2019: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/29/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/30/2019: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., Cuyahoga Community College West Campus, 11000 Pleasant Valley Rd

7/30/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

7/31/2019: 12:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m., Parma Blood Donation Center, 5585 Pearl Road

Rocky River

7/21/2019: 8:30 a.m. – 1 p.m., St Christopher Catholic Church, 20141 Detroit Rd

Seven Hills

7/26/2019: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Seven Hills Cmnty Rec Center, 7777 Summitview Drive

Solon

7/16/2019: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Signature of Solon, 39000 Signature Drive

7/30/2019: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., Cleveland Clinic Solon, 29800 Bainbridge Road

7/30/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Church of the Resurrection, 32001 Cannon Road

Strongsville

7/16/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Cleveland Clinic Strongsville, 16761 Southpark Center

7/26/2019: 10:15 a.m. – 3:15 p.m., Cuyahoga County Library Strongsville Branch, 18700 Westwood Dr

7/27/2019: 8 a.m. – 2 p.m., Ehrnfelt Recreation Center, 18100 Royalton Rd

Valley View

7/16/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Valley View Community Center, 6828 Hathaway Road

Westlake

7/21/2019: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, 28455 Center Ridge Road

7/22/2019: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Westlake Porter Public Library, 27333 Center Ridge Rd.

Erie County:

Huron

7/17/2019: 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., St Peter Catholic Church, 430 Main St.

7/25/2019: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., Huron Public Library, 333 Williams St.

Sandusky

7/17/2019: 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., Kroger Marketplace, 226 E Perkins Ave

7/25/2019: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Holy Angels Catholic Church, 428 Tiffin Ave

7/26/2019: 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., Firelands Regional Medical Center, 1912 Hayes Ave Sandusky

7/27/2019: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., Sandusky Mall, Rt. 250 Milan Rd.

7/30/2019: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., American Legion, 3615 Hayes Ave

Vermilion

7/22/2019: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Ritter Public Library, 5680 Liberty Ave.

7/23/2019: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Vermilion High School, 1250 Sanford Street

Geauga County:

Burton

7/13/2019: 2 p.m. – 8 p.m., Joes Vinyl Window Shop, 15020 Shedd Road

Chagrin Falls

7/20/2019: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m., RiPT Fitness, 8464 E. Washington St.

Chardon

7/14/2019: 8 a.m. – 2 p.m., Church of Saint Mary, 401 North St.

7/18/2019: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Munson Town Hall, 12210  Auburn Rd.

Chesterland

7/16/2019: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Geauga West Library, 13455 Chillicothe Rd.

Huron County:

Greenwich

7/30/2019: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., The Ripley Church, 4130 Edwards Road

Norwalk

7/15/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., First United Methodist Church, 60 West Main St.

7/26/2019: 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., Fisher-Titus Medical Center, 272 Benedict Ave.

Plymouth

7/18/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Plymouth Village Community Building, 48 West Broadway

Willard

7/24/2019: 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., St Francis Xavier School, 25 West Perry St.

Lake County:

Eastlake

7/24/2019: 11 a.m. – 6 p.m., Lake County Captains, 35300 Vine Street

7/26/2019: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Four Points by Sheraton, 35000 Curtis Blvd

Kirtland

7/29/2019: 12 p.m. – 5:30 p.m., Kirtland Public Library, 9267 Chillicothe Rd.

Madison

7/15/2019: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Cornerstone Friends Church, 2300 Hubbard Rd.

Mentor

7/14/2019: 7:30 a.m. – 1 p.m., St Gabriel Church, 9925 Johnnycake Ridge Rd.

7/15/2019: 12 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Mentor Civic Arena, 8600 Munson Rd.

7/26/2019: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Lowes of Mentor, 9600 Mentor Ave.

7/26/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Hope Ridge United Methodist Church, 9870 Johnnycake Ridge Rd.

7/29/2019: 3 p.m. – 7 p.m., Pinegate Community Clubhouse, 6301 Gatewood Dr.

Painesville

7/15/2019: 12 p.m. – 6 p.m., First Church Congregational, 22 Liberty St.

7/31/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., 1922 Coffee & Brew, 1505 Madison Ave

Perry

7/16/2019: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Perry United Methodist Church, 3875 Main St.

Willoughby

7/25/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Willoughby Library, 30 Public Square

Willoughby Hills

7/18/2019: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Willoughby Hills Community Center, 35400 Chardon Rd.

Willowick

7/19/2019: 1 p.m. – 7 p.m., Willowick Community Center, 321 East 314th Street

Lorain County:

Avon

7/15/2019: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., French Creek Family YMCA, 2010 Recreation Lane

7/24/2019: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., VFW hall, 36950 Mills Rd

7/29/2019: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., Costco Avon, 35804 Detroit Road

Columbia Station

7/14/2019: 8:30 a.m. – 2 p.m., Christ Church, 23080 Royalton Rd.

Elyria

7/31/2019: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Am Red Cross Lorain County, 2929 West River Road North

Wellington

7/24/2019: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Penfield Township Community Center, 41012 State Route 18

Please make an appointment to give now.

World Sickle Cell Awareness Day highlights need to fill Missing Types

By Glinda Dames Fincher

June 16, 2019- My name is Glinda Dames Fincher and I have lived with sickle cell disease for 60 years. Today is World Sickle Cell Awareness Day.

Sickle cell disease affects red blood cells. It makes them hard and sickle shaped instead of soft and round. As a result, blood has difficulty flowing smoothly through the blood vessels and carrying oxygen to the rest of the body.  This causes severe anemia and excruciating pain called sickle cell crisis.

Because of my illness, I depend on blood donors giving blood on a regular basis. As part of my treatment, I receive monthly red cell exchange transfusions. I receive two pints of red blood cells during each of these transfusions. If I have to undergo a major surgery, I receive a total exchange transfusion, which requires about seven to nine units of red cells. I have received regular blood transfusions for the last 20 years to help manage my sickle cell disease. Without donated blood, sickle cell patients face sickle cell crisis, and other complications such as strokes, organ failure, chronic wounds, and shortened lifespan.

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Glinda Dames Fincher speaks at the the Missing Types campaign kick-off at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland

Since most of those with sickle cell in the U.S. are of African and Latino descent, those who receive frequent blood transfusions need blood from those of their same race in order to decrease the chances of the patient having a reaction to the red cells. African American and Latino blood donors are greatly needed to provide the lifesaving transfusions needed not only by those with sickle cell, but also those with other diseases such as cancer, kidney failure and other chronic disorders.”

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I encourage everyone to help fill the Missing Types this summer. Sickle cell disease is the most common inherited blood disorder in the US and the world, with about 100,000 with the disease in the US, and an estimated 10 million with the disease worldwide and 100 million carriers of the sickle gene which they may pass on to their children. More blood donors are needed now. Join the American Red Cross and give blood to ensure patients like myself, and so many others, have the lifesaving treatment we need.

Do your part to help fill the missing types this summer and help save lives by visiting RedCrossBlood.org/MissingTypes to schedule a donation appointment today.

N_tice _nything missing? Help the Red Cross fill the Missing Types

By Christy Peters, External Communications Manager, Northern Ohio Blood Region

June 13, 2019- When the letters A, B and O vanish from everyday life, the gaps are striking. And when A, B, O and AB blood types are missing from hospital shelves, lives could be changed forever.

MT 2019_InfographicOn June 11 the American Red Cross partnered with the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame to launch the Missing Types campaign to raise awareness of the need for new and current blood donors to donate and help ensure blood is available for patients in need this summer. The O’s in Long Live Rock disappeared during the launch, to illustrate the critical role every blood donor plays in ensuring the main blood groups – A, B and O, are available whenever and wherever needed.

A sad truth is only 3 out of 100 Americans donate blood each year, but every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood. If more people roll up a sleeve to give, blood shortages can be prevented.

Why blood donors are needed

Tymia McCullough relies on blood donations to help battle sickle cell disease, an inherited disease that causes red blood cells to form in an abnormal crescent shape. Sickle cell disease patients can suffer a range of conditions, including acute anemia, tissue and organ damage, terrible pain and even strokes.

With no widely used cure, regular blood transfusions are one of the most common treatments for sickle cell disease. At one time, when McCullough arrived at the hospital, the blood type she needed for her transfusion was not available.

“It was the scariest, most frightening moment of a mother’s life, because I thought that she would not be able to get it,” said Susie Pitts, Tymia’s mother. “In that moment, in that experience, I was very afraid. I was scared for my daughter’s life ─ what was going to happen if she didn’t get the blood she needed?”

Eight hours later, the nurse came running through the door with the needed blood product.

Again, this past fall Tymia experienced a painful sickle cell crisis and needed to wait 10 long hours for the hospital to locate the blood she needed for her treatment. Thankfully, Tymia is better today, yet her experience illustrates the ongoing need for blood, and at times, the frightening reality patients face when needed blood supplies become critically low.

Make a difference today

  • Spread the word
  • Write out your name with the A’s, B’s and O’s missing on the “blank” selfie sign, and take a photo with it. (Underscores are recommended. Example: _meric_n Red Cr_ss. Basic directions are also posted at the previous link for your convenience.)
  • Visit RedCrossBlood.org to share a Missing Types message on your social media.

Commit about an hour of your day to give blood and help save a life. Patients need you.

Six things to know before donating:

  1. You don’t need to know your blood type.
    According to a national survey conducted earlier this year on behalf of the Red Cross, more than half (54%) of people believe they need to know their blood type to donate blood. This is simply untrue.
  2. Hydrate – drink an extra 16 oz. of liquid before and after donating.
  3. Enjoy a healthy meal rich in iron and vitamin C before donating – avoid foods high in fat just prior to donation.
  4. Wear comfortable clothing with sleeves that can be raised above the elbow.
  5. Complete a RapidPass on the day of donation, prior to arriving, to save time.
  6. Remember to bring an ID.

Help fill in the missing types this summer. Schedule a donation appointment now.

Click here to visit out Flickr account to view photos from the Missing Type kick-off event at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

Our thanks to Joann Fabric and Craft Stores for providing the material used to cover the letter “O” in the Long Live Rock sculpture.

This article was edited by Glenda Bogar,  American Red Cross volunteer

Premier Partner Program & sponsors

By Christy Peters, External Communications Manager, Northern Ohio Blood Region

March 25, 2019- Recently, the American Red Cross presented Kalahari Resorts & Conventions with its Premier Blood Drive Partner award. The Premier Partner program recognizes blood drive sponsors who have collected at least 50 pints in a year. Last year, Kalahari collected 115 pints of lifesaving blood for local patients.

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Kalahari Resorts & Conventions recently received the Premier Blood Drive Partner Award earlier this year. L to R: Angie Reyes, HR Director, Iryna Pylypenko, Employment Manager, Mary Ann Benton, Brian Shanle, General Manager

More than 80 percent of blood donations are made at blood drives organized by volunteer sponsor groups and coordinators. Right now, blood drive hosts are needed for spring and throughout the year. A blood drive is a commitment to help meet the needs of seriously ill or injured patients. Blood products are essential for the treatment of accident victims, surgical and sickle cell disease patients, those receiving cancer treatments, premature babies and others.

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James Lassiter III of Garfield Heights donated blood at a recent Kalahari hosted blood drive in February

Every single day, the Northern Ohio Blood Services Region needs to collect 500 pints of blood to meet the needs of patients at more than 50 local hospitals. This cannot happen without the support of blood drive sponsors. Become a blood drive sponsor and help save lives! To learn more about hosting a blood drive, visit https://www.redcrossblood.org/hosting-a-blood-drive/learn-about-hosting/why-host-a-blood-drive.html or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

 

Donors give from the heart at 21st annual blood drive

Valentine’s week tradition held once again at Landerhaven

By Glenda Bogar, American Red Cross volunteer

IMG_0801Love was in the air and flowing freely on Tuesday at Executive Caterers at Landerhaven. Not because it was two days before Valentine’s Day. It was thanks to the generous residents of Northeast Ohio who donated 495 pints of blood during the Give from the Heart blood drive in Mayfield Heights.

The sentiment “give more love, give more life” aptly sums up the event and the donors’ acts of kindness. Their gift of blood will help save lives—and is especially timely during the current blood emergency.

The American Red Cross’ 21st annual Give from the Heart blood drive, sponsored this year by Executive Caterers, Cleveland Clinic and Lake Health, has been a tradition in Northeast Ohio for more than 20 years, collecting nearly 13,500 pints for local patients.

The premier event destination, which hosts elegant weddings and corporate affairs was bustling with a sea of red shirts worn by Red Cross Blood Services technicians assisting donors. WINT Radio 1130 AM and 101.5 FM fueled the energy of the event by playing music and engaging donors in trivia games.

Donors received buy-one-get-one ticket offers to Cleveland Cavaliers basketball games. They were also treated to gourmet food and free gifts.

“We are so grateful to our donors,” said Christy Peters, external communications manager of the Red Cross of Northeast Ohio’s Blood Services division. “Their donations at the Give from the Heart blood drive will impact so many local patients and help us overcome the current blood emergency.”

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Regional CEO Mike Parks and Collections Specialist Tony Parrish-Figueroa

Mike Parks, CEO of the Red Cross Northeast Ohio Region, Nick McCauley, Greater Cleveland Chapter board member, and a number of the Red Cross Young Professionals Council shared in the giving spirit by donating blood alongside area residents.

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Greater Cleveland Chapter Board member Nick McCauley

 

 

 

Janice Tanori, a 78-year-old from Cleveland Heights, was among the donors. As a teenager, she tried to donate blood but couldn’t when she found out she was anemic. Years later, as an adult working at Gould Ocean Systems in Cleveland, she volunteered to donate at a company-sponsored blood drive, fully expecting to be turned away but hoping to spend some time away from work. Instead, she learned she was eligible.

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Janice Tanori

“It doesn’t pay to try to get out of work,” she said. “But once I was able to donate, I began to give regularly and have ever since.” That was more than 30 years ago. Janice now donates blood twice each year.

The Give from the Heart blood drive is a unique special event and was successful in helping to restore the lifesaving blood supply.

There are many scheduled blood drives aimed at helping the blood supply recover from a donation shortfall over the winter holidays that prompted the Red Cross to issue an emergency call for blood and platelet donors.

Donors of all blood types, especially platelet donors and type O blood donors, are needed to prevent the blood shortage from continuing throughout winter and impacting patient care.

So what is a blood emergency and why is donating blood so important? Here are some facts:

  • Right now, the Red Cross has less than a three-day supply of most blood types, and blood products are being distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in. The goal is to keep a five-day supply on hand at all times to meet the needs of patients and be prepared for emergencies that require significant volumes of donated blood products.
  • Snow storms and frigid weather in parts of the country have prolonged the shortfall in donations. Since the beginning of the year, more than 16,000 blood and platelet donations went uncollected due to blood drive cancellations.
  • With more winter weather possible in February, additional blood drive cancellations could further strain the blood supply.
  • The recent federal government shutdown also affected donations as more than 4 percent of Red Cross blood collections come from drives sponsored by military and local, state and federal government agencies. About 30 blood drives were canceled across the country due to the government shutdown, resulting in more than 900 uncollected donations.
  • Blood products are perishable, and the only source of lifesaving blood for patients is volunteer blood donors. Therefore, any disruptions to donations–from declines due to holiday travel to severe weather and even widespread flu–can lead to an emergency need and cause delays in essential medical care.

You can help. To find a blood drive near you and make an appointment, visit our website or call 1-800-RED CROSS.

 

Emergency need: Donors urged to give blood and platelets now

January 16, 2019 – A donation shortfall over the winter holidays is prompting the American Red Cross to issue an emergency call for blood and platelet donors to give now Blood Drive, Fairfax, Virginia 2018to prevent a blood shortage from continuing throughout winter and affecting patient care. The Red Cross collected more than 27,000 fewer blood and platelet donations the weeks of Christmas and New Year’s than needed to sustain a sufficient blood supply, as busy holiday schedules kept many donors away.

Right now, the Red Cross has less than a three-day supply of most blood types, and blood products are being distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in.

You can help!

  1. Make an appointment to give blood or platelets by downloading the free Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
  2. Let your friends and family know there is an emergency need for blood and platelet donors and ask them to #GiveNow.
  3. Bring someone to donate with you.
  4. Host a blood drive so others can give – be it at your office location, place of worship or community organization.

Your support can help ensure that blood products are there for trauma victims, premature babies, patients going through cancer treatment and others who depend on transfusions for survival.

The hospitals that rely on blood and blood products collected by the Red Cross regularly hold blood drives of their own. One such hospital is the Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center. Blood Donation 2018

From the days of Clara Barton and our founding, the Red Cross has had a strong relationship with members of the military, veterans and their families.  Every day, the Red Cross’ Service to the Armed Forces provides 24/7 global emergency communication services and support in military and veteran health care facilities across the country and around the world. Furthermore, Susan Fuehrer, director of the Northeast Ohio VA healthcare system, also serves on the Red Cross’ Greater Cleveland board of directors.

On February 1 from 7 AM to 5 PM, the Cleveland VA Medical Center will be hosting a blood drive, which is open to the public.

Are you unable to donate on February 1st, but have space on your calendar on February 12th to give life? Well, you are in luck!  Landerhaven in Mayfield Heights will be hosting its annual blood drive, which is the largest in the region. The blood drive will be held on Tuesday, February 12th at 6111 Landerhaven Drive from 7 AM-7 PM.

Every day, volunteer blood and platelet donors across the country are needed to help save lives. Don’t wait to help. Give now.