Red Cross: Blood Inventory Rebuilding Continues

JOHNSTOWN – Efforts to replenish critically low blood supplies across the 100-county Greater Alleghenies Region of American Red Cross Blood Services continue this week, even as regional officials prepare for another winter storm predicted for the middle of this week.

Monday morning, the region had just a one-day or less supply of types O negative, A negative and B negative blood available to support nearly 100 hospitals. Inventories of most blood types are below a two-day supply; a week’s supply of all blood types is desired.

Last month, the Greater Alleghenies Region experienced weather-related cancellations representing nearly two collection days, or nearly 2,000 blood donations.

“March is National Red Cross Month, and we’re looking for many ‘hometown heroes’ to come forward and help those in need by donating blood,” commented Jim Starr, Greater Alleghenies Region CEO.

He reiterated portions of the 2007 Presidential Proclamation of Red Cross Month, released by the White House last week: “During this month, we pay tribute to this remarkable organization and all those who have answered the call to serve a cause greater than self and offered support and healing in times of need…I encourage all Americans to help make our world a better place by volunteering their time, energy, and talents for others.”

“When a patient needs transfusions, the blood products – red blood cells, platelets and plasma – must be readily available. Every two seconds, someone needs a blood transfusion, and it’s too late to recruit donors when the need arises,” Starr said.

Area residents may donate at these upcoming Red Cross blood drives: (see attached list of March 6 – 12 blood drives). Starr added that presenting donors will also receive an embroidered fleece blanket, while supplies last.

“Donation appointments may be scheduled at many of these sites,” he commented. “To schedule your blood donation appointment where available, or to find a blood drive near you, visit www.redcrosslife.org or call 1-800-GIVE LIFE (1-800-448-3543).”

Individuals age 17 or older, who weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. Those with specific eligibility questions should call 800-542-5663.

Local residents and patients are among those served through American Red Cross Blood Services, Greater Alleghenies Region. This Region directly serves hospitals, patients and donors in a 100-county area in Kentucky, Maryland, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia, and also supports blood needs experienced by patients elsewhere in hospitals served through Red Cross Blood Services.

American Red Cross Blood Services, Greater Alleghenies Region, Blood Drives

Friday, March 9, 2007

Johnstown, PA: Noon to 6 p.m., John P. Murtha Donor Center, 250 Jari Dr.

Sykesville, PA: Noon to 6 p.m., Bethel Baptist Church, 100 E. Main St.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Altoona, PA: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Red Cross Blood Donor Center, 317 East Pleasant Valley Blvd.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Indiana, PA: 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saint Bernard of Clairvaux Roman Catholic Church, 200 Clairvaux Rd.

Monday, March 12, 2007 

Clearfield, PA: Noon to 6 p.m., West Side United Methodist Church, 317 Nichols St.

Curwensville, PA: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Ridgeview Elder Care, Cafeteria, 30 4th Ave.

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