Valdosta Daily Times

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December 24, 2013

Holiday blood drives continue

--- — The Red Cross typically sees a decline in donations during the winter holiday season. Individuals can help the Red Cross and hospital patients this month while discovering the true meaning of the season by giving a generous gift of a blood or platelet donation. Each donation made can help save up to three lives.

“Hospital patients don’t get a holiday from needing blood and platelets,” said Jerry J. K. Tillery, CEO Southern Blood Services Region. “The closer we get to the major holiday week, the more we see donations decline. People are busy with gift shopping, holiday parties and there is an overall sense of distraction. We need donors to come in and give before they get too busy with other things.”

Every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood. On average, the Red Cross must collect 15,000 pints of blood every day to meet the needs of patients at approximately 2,700 hospitals and transfusion centers across the country. Blood donations are used to treat cancer patients, trauma victims, premature babies and those living with chronic blood diseases each and every day.

As a special “thank you,” all those who present to donate blood from today, Dec. 24, through Friday, Jan. 3, will receive a commemorative long-sleeve American Red Cross T-shirt — while supplies last. Quantities and sizes may be limited.

Blood donors are encouraged to invite a loved one to follow in their footsteps and donate blood this holiday season. Visit http://rcblood.org/HolidayPostcard to upload a picture of your Red Cross blood donation and send a postcard to a loved one. For more information or to make an appointment to give blood or platelets, please visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Upcoming blood donation opportunities:

• 11 a.m.-3 p.m. today, Dec. 24, Valdosta Mall blood drive, 1700 Norman Drive, Presenting donors will receive a $10 Belk gift card and a long-sleeve T-shirt while supplies last.

• 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Friday, Dec. 27, Ameris Bank blood drive, 3140 Inner Perimeter Road. Presenting donors will receive a Wendy’s coupon and a long-sleeve T-shirt while supplies last.

• 3-7 p.m. Monday, Dec. 30, Hahira community blood drive, Hahira United Methodist Church, 208 N. Church St.

• 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Dec. 31, Lowndes County Health Department blood drive, in the conference room, 206 S. Patterson St.

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