DAYTON — After the hustle bustle of the holidays and the first snow of the season, it’s tempting to hunker down during the month of January and hibernate. But Community Blood Center hopes you’ll venture out when able to make a New Year’s blood donation.
January is National Blood Donor Month, a tradition that began in 1970 to raise awareness that blood is often in short supply during the winter months. The challenge begins with December’s holiday activities, vacations and family travel. The arrival of winter brings snow storms, school cancellations, difficult road conditions and seasonal illness combine to make blood collections more difficult.
CBC begins the New Year with an ample reserve and careful blood collection planning in place to reliably provide the blood and blood products needed to its 25 partner hospitals and health centers across a 15-county service area.
“We have to be constantly vigilant, and consistently recycle the blood types and blood products that may be needed at a moment’s notice,” said CBC Chief Operating Officer Jodi Minneman. We have collection goals to meet every day, no matter what obstacles we face. We count on our donors to help us overcome any challenge.”
CBC must register approximately 300 blood and platelet donors per day, with an average of seven mobile blood drives per day.
National Blood Donor Month is also a time to honor all those who donate whole blood, platelets, and plasma. “We love our donors,” said Minneman. “They care so much for the good of our community.”
Blood is needed approximately every two seconds to treat patients with cancer and other diseases, organ transplant recipients, and accident victims. Car accident victims may require dozens of units of blood and blood products.
Only 37 percent of the U.S. population is eligible to give blood, and less than 10 percent donate annually. A whole blood donation takes about an hour. Donors are encouraged to schedule an appointment online at www.DonorTime.com or call 1-800-388-GIVE.
“If you are at least 17 years of age (16 with parental consent), weigh at least 110 pounds (you may have to weigh more depending on your height) and meet other donor requirements, you may be eligible to donate blood,” said organizers. “Learn more at www.GivingBlood.org.”
Blood donation requirements: Donors are required to provide a photo ID that includes their full name. Past CBC donors are also asked to bring their CBC donor ID card. Donors must be at least 16 years of age (16 years old with parental consent: form available at www.givingblood.org or at CBC branch and blood drive locations), weigh a minimum of 110 pounds (you may have to weigh more, depending on your height), and be in good physical health. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) changes blood donor eligibility guidelines periodically. Individuals with eligibility questions are invited to email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1(800)388-GIVE. Make an appointment at www.DonorTime.com.
Community Blood Center/Community Tissue Services® is an independent, not-for-profit organization. Community Blood Center provides blood products to 24 hospitals within a 15-county service area in the Miami (Ohio) and Whitewater (Indiana) Valleys. For more information about Community Blood Center/Community Tissue Services®, visit www.givingblood.org.