Today is the last day to donate during the ‘Honoring Heroes’ blood drive

Local News

EVANSVILLE, Ind (WEHT) In honor of the Honor Flight of Southwestern Indiana and all military veterans, the American Red Cross in Evansville is hosting several blood drives this week.

The first blood drive was Monday. Other blood drives being held this week:

May 12 Evansville Community Blood Drive
10:00 am – 4:00 pm
29 S. Stockwell Road Evansville

May 14 Crossroads Christian Church
10:00 am – 4:00 pm
10800 Lincoln Avenue Newburgh

May 15 Crossroads Christian Church
10:00 am – 4:00 pm
10800 Lincoln Avenue Newburgh

Schedule your appointment by calling 1-800-REDCROSS or visiting www.redcrossblood.org and entering Sponsor Code: Honor Drive.

Eyewitness News talked to Blood Services Manager Ashley Hughes about Monday’s event and what this week means for them.

Transcription

Ashley Hughes: We’ve been able to do a lot of blood collection here today, it’s been a wonderful opportunity for all of us to have these individuals come out. We’ve had over 40 individuals show up, we had a goal of getting at least 35 pints in honor of our military servicemen and women. And I think we met the goal, the community really came out to support us.

Shelley Kirk: That’s fantastic. Now the current coronavirus has really thrown a wrench into donations. Talk a little bit about that. And what is the greatest need at this time?

Ashley Hughes: Absolutely. So we would love to see new donors come out. Unfortunately, when the corona virus began making its impact, we had to cancel a lot of blood drives in places where the rooms were too small, and also those that were going on our Bloodmobile to ensure that we could do social distancing. So we’ve been looking for some larger rooms and thankfully, our American Red Cross chapter building has accommodated us so much during this time. And again, those first time donors, anyone who is eligible and healthy, I encourage you [to donate]. Those eligibility requirements are updated pretty frequently. We are regulated by the FDA and they they do update those, so please go online if you think you might be eligible, and consider making an appointment today.

Shelley Kirk: Absolutely. Now this is the Honoring Heroes blood drive- talk about the link between giving blood and our heroes in the military. Why is this such a good way to honor them?

Ashley Hughes: Yes, so for the last 130 years, the Red Cross has been serving our military and their families and honoring them in any way that we can. And so what we do is this Honoring Heroes drive. May is National Military Appreciation Month, and this is just one way that we’ve been able to do that. And we’ve really just had a great turnout as I was saying, and meeting that need for our military members.

Shelley Kirk: And I know you have other blood drives tomorrow- actually later this week, and talk about why this is so important to keep the blood supply up. What does this mean to the average Joe at home watching this?

Ashley Hughes: Absolutely. So we never know when an accident is going to occur and somebody’s going to need blood products. We never know when a diagnosis is going to come in, where it requires blood products. And unfortunately, we can’t stockpile blood products. You can only give every 156 days for whole blood, and then for our power red donors every 112, and so we always want to make sure that we’re encouraging people who are eligible to come out and donate. And it’s just one way to where we just never know what’s going to happen. And we want to make sure that we’re supplying all the hospitals across the country where the need is. We also supply our VA hospitals in different things. So just making sure that we have those products again, you never know when you may be the recipient or someone you love may be the recipient of a blood product from The American Red Cross.

Shelley Kirk: Well tell us where folks can get more information and how do they sign up?

Ashley Hughes: Absolutely. So we are encouraging appointments right now due to the COVID Coronavirus, and so we’re asking that you please go online to our www.redcrossblood.org and you can actually put in your zip code, find an appointment near you and sign up that way. You can always download our blood donor app as well and search the same way and then also calling our 1-800- RedCross. That’s a great way to to talk to a live person in order to get you a blood appointment near you.

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(This story was originally published on May 11, 2020)

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