The holiday season is a time for giving and showing appreciation, but it is easy to be swept up in the commercialism of it all. The American Red Cross is asking Morgan residents to take a moment to be a part of something truly meaningful by giving the gift of life.
Tuesday, Dec. 22, the American Red Cross will have trained professionals at the Morgan County offices from noon – 4:45 p.m. to assist residents with their life-saving blood donations.
To encourage donations, all those who choose to come to a donation location between Dec. 23, 2015, and Jan. 3, 2016, will get a long-sleeve Red Cross T-shirt, while supplies last.
Holiday activities, severe weather and seasonal illnesses like the flu can pull people away from their regular blood donation schedules. This creates a greater need for blood donations this time of year, especially around the winter holidays.
Jamie Czesak made her first blood donation on Dec. 27, 2013. “As I spent Christmas with my family, I realized how lucky I was to have my health and how we never really know when our last Christmas will be. I decided that I would face my fears and do one of the few things I can do to help save someone’s life ̶ donate blood.”
Healthy donors with all blood types are needed, especially those with types AB, O, B negative and A negative.
If you can’t make it to the Morgan County building on Dec. 22, there are other needs. Giving platelets is essential during the holidays. Platelets are a key clotting component of blood often needed by cancer patients and must be transfused within five days of donation.
A single platelet donation can provide enough platelets for a full therapeutic dose for a patient in need. In fact, some platelet donations yield enough platelets for two or three therapeutic doses. By contrast, it takes four to six whole blood donations to produce a single therapeutic dose.
In patients who need platelets are undergoing chemotherapy or organ transplant, a platelet dose from a single donor reduces the patient’s exposure to multiple donors and is therefore preferred by many physicians.
To make an appointment to donate blood, download the free Red Cross Blood Donor App from app stores, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). Donors can now use the Blood Donor App to access their donor card and view vital signs from previous donations.