American Red Cross organizes a blood drive on Broken Arrow campus
TNE Editor
/ Categories: Campus News, Health

American Red Cross organizes a blood drive on Broken Arrow campus

Published 1/26/17

Bailee Harmon

TNE Writer

Giving blood is one way to give to the community for free.

“The blood donated here goes to area hospitals, but in times of need blood can be sent to other Red Cross locations,” said Marcia Graham, account manager and donor recruiter for the Red Cross. “For instance, if there is a disaster in a location and they need more blood than they have on hand.”

In Oklahoma, the Red Cross takes blood and platelet donations. The platelet donations can be made at the main building for the Red Cross. The closest building for Northeastern Oklahoma is located in Tulsa, and anyone may go there to donate blood Monday through Saturday. Donors can donate blood every 56 days, platelets every seven days and plasma every 28 days.

“The plasma at the Red Cross is secured from the whole blood donation, it is not collected separately,” said Graham.

The Red Cross is the single largest provider of blood products in the U.S., supplying about 40 percent of the nation’s blood supply each year by collecting an average of 14,000 donations every day to keep up with demand.

“We do find summer and winter harder to keep up supply,” said Lori McFarlane, regional communication director. “So right now we are in a shortage. We need blood.”

Holiday schedules keep people busy during the winter time, so it can be hard for donors to make a donation appointment and keep it.

“Summer is another difficult time for blood collection because nearly 20 percent of all donations come from high school and college students,” said Jan Hale, external communications manager. “When they aren’t available, like during the summer, it makes collections difficult.”

Blood donated is delivered to a Red Cross blood component laboratory where it is processed and tested. After the blood is processed, it is stored in a bank until needed. Since there is a shortage of blood, the Red Cross is using the blood they receive just as quickly as they are collecting it.

“Blood and platelet donors can feel confident that by donating blood through the Red Cross that they are helping to ensure that blood products are available for patients in more than 88 hospitals throughout the Southwest Blood Services Region, as well as 26,000 hospitals and transfusion centers across the country,” said Hale. “Approximately 80 percent of blood donated through the Red Cross comes from blood drives hosted by volunteer blood drive sponsors, like NSU Broken Arrow.”

For students or faculty looking to donate, there is a drive taking place on the Broken Arrow campus in the BAAS Annex on Feb. 9. All NSU donors will receive a “We Challenge U” T-shirt and a $5 Amazon gift code for donating. The code will be received in a thank you email from the Red Cross.

For more information about donating, visit http://www.redcross.org/give-blood.


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