WICHITA, Kan. (May 17, 2021) — The American Red Cross urges all who are healthy to make this a summer full of life for patients by scheduling an appointment to give blood.
As the nation transitions to a new, hopeful phase of this devastating pandemic and people begin to return to some of their favorite activities, the Red Cross is concerned about the impact this could have on blood donor turnout and the blood supply this summer. The need for lifesaving blood transfusions never takes a break. It’s critical to have blood ready to go when every second counts.
In thanks for making it a summer full of life, those who come to give blood plasma in May will automatically be entered for a chance to win a travel trailer camper that sleeps five*, powered by Suburban Propane, via their SuburbanCares initiative. The Red Cross is also thanking those who come to donate May 28-June 13 with a limited-edition T-shirt, while supplies last.
“Suburban Propane is honored to partner with the American Red Cross and actor James Van Der Beek on their summer campaign to help bring attention to the need for blood donations,” said Nandini Sankara, Spokesperson for Suburban Propane. “Our SuburbanCares corporate pillar highlights our continued dedication to giving back to our local communities and through this platform, we support a host of community outreach initiatives throughout the nation; including our national partnership with the American Red Cross. It is our hope that this promotion for a chance to win a travel (trailer) camper will encourage donors to show their support and to help fulfill the need for blood collection.”
Individuals of all blood types are urged to schedule an appointment now to give blood, and in most cases, those who have received a COVID-19 vaccine can donate. However, knowing the name of the manufacturer of the vaccine they received is important in determining donation eligibility. Appointments can be made by downloading the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enabling the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device.
The Red Cross is testing blood, platelet and plasma donations for COVID-19 antibodies. The test may indicate if the donor’s immune system has produced antibodies to this coronavirus, regardless of whether they developed symptoms. Testing may also identify the presence of antibodies developed after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine.
Plasma from routine blood and platelet donations that test positive for high levels of antibodies may be used as convalescent plasma to meet potential future needs of COVID-19 patients. Convalescent plasma is a type of blood product collected from COVID-19 survivors who have antibodies that may help patients who are actively fighting the virus.
The Red Cross is not testing donors to diagnose illness, referred to as a diagnostic test. To protect the health and safety of Red Cross staff and donors, it is important that individuals who do not feel well or believe they may be ill with COVID-19 postpone donation.
At a time when health information has never been more important, the Red Cross is also screening all blood, platelet and plasma donations from self-identified African American donors for the sickle cell trait. This additional screening will provide Black donors with an additional health insight and help the Red Cross identify compatible blood types more quickly to help patients with sickle cell disease. Blood transfusion is an essential treatment for those with sickle cell disease, and blood donations from individuals of the same race, ethnicity and blood type have a unique ability to help patients fighting sickle cell disease.
Donors can expect to receive antibody test and sickle cell trait screening results, if applicable, within one to two weeks through the Red Cross Blood Donor App and the online donor portal at RedCrossBlood.org.
Blood drive safety
Each Red Cross blood drive and donation center follows the highest standards of safety and infection control, and additional precautions – including temperature checks, social distancing and face masks for donors and staff – have been implemented to help protect the health of all those in attendance. Donors are asked to schedule an appointment prior to arriving at the drive and are required to wear a face mask while at the drive, in alignment with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention public guidance.
Upcoming blood donation opportunities May 16-June 12
6/7/2021: 9:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., First Baptist Church, 7th and Osage
5/18/2021: 9:30 a.m. – 2 p.m., Hope Community Church, 1831 E 21st St
5/21/2021: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., Andover United Methodist Church, 1429 N Andover Rd
6/4/2021: 12 p.m. – 6 p.m., St. James Catholic Church, 1012 Belmont
6/1/2021: 11:15 a.m. – 5:30 p.m., YMCA El Dorado, 300 N. Main
5/28/2021: 12:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Senior Citizens Building, Lincoln and Forest
5/15/2021: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, 6582 322nd Road
5/21/2021: 12 p.m. – 6 p.m., First United Methodist Church, 2448 Edgemont
6/11/2021: 12 p.m. – 6 p.m., Central Christian Church, 206 W Central
5/20/2021: 12 p.m. – 6 p.m., First United Methodist Church, 1000 Millington
5/26/2021: 1 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Countryside Christian Church, 1901 East 4th
5/27/2021: 8:30 a.m. – 2 p.m., Countryside Christian Church, 1901 E. 4th
6/4/2021: 12:30 p.m. – 6 p.m., Oswego Senior Center, 723 Commercial
5/24/2021: 11:45 a.m. – 6 p.m., First Baptist Church, 304 W. 9th
5/25/2021: 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., First Baptist Church, 304 W. 9th
5/26/2021: 12:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Central Park Pavilion, 101 S. Forest St.
5/27/2021: 8 a.m. – 1 p.m., Central Park Pavilion, 101 S. Forest St.
6/2/2021: 10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Jane Phillips Nowata Health Center, 237 S. Locust Street
5/17/2021: 1 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Plains Church, 102 N Argonia Rd
6/11/2021: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., Neodesha United Methodist Church, 802 Indiana
About blood donation
Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enable the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass® to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.
About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.
* Restrictions apply. Winner must provide tow vehicle with the appropriate tow capacity for use with the prize vehicle at all times, i.e., such as a full-sized truck or SUV, in order to take delivery of the prize (2021 Coachmen Clipper Cadet 21CBH, estimated at 5,000 pounds). Additional information and details are available at RedCrossBlood.org/SummerFullOfLife