Hur­ri­cane vic­tims need blood

There’s a crit­i­cal need for blood do­na­tions as sup­plies dwin­dles in Texas.

Rome News-Tribune - - NEWS -

Hur­ri­cane Har­vey and flood­ing as­so­ci­ated with the storm has had a ma­jor im­pact on the na­tion’s blood sup­ply. In re­sponse to the need for blood do­na­tions, non­profit re­gional blood cen­ter Blood As­sur­ance has sent and will con­tinue send­ing blood sup­ply to cen­ters in South­east Texas. Blood As­sur­ance is call­ing on community mem­bers to make a blood do­na­tion at a lo­cal donor cen­ter or blood­mo­bile drives due to the in­creased de­mand.

“We are hum­bled to have the op­por­tu­nity to be able to sup­port those in need in Texas,” said Brian McDaniel, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of op­er­a­tions for the Blood As­sur­ance’s Ge­or­gia op­er­a­tions. “Our hearts are with ev­ery per­son who has been af­fected by this tragedy. We are ask­ing for the great peo­ple of Ge­or­gia to visit a donor cen­ter or blood­mo­bile and do­nate blood to­day and in also weeks to come. The need for blood sup­ply is ur­gent, and we want to en­sure ev­ery per­son af­fected by Hur­ri­cane Har­vey has the blood sup­ply they need dur­ing this time.”

Many blood drives in Hous­ton and Cor­pus Christi ar­eas of Texas are be­ing can­celled due to staff and ve­hi­cles be­ing un­able to reach blood drive lo­ca­tions, which has im­pacted their abil­ity to col­lect suf­fi­cient blood sup­ply to main­tain the needed blood for the hos­pi­tals they serve.

Of­fi­cials are ex­pect­ing rain in Hous­ton for rest of week, and the need for blood do­na­tions and sup­plies will con­tinue through the next weeks

and months. Blood As­sur­ance is re­quest­ing do­na­tions from all blood types, but par­tic­u­larly those with types O neg­a­tive and O pos­i­tive.

The AABB In­teror­ga­ni­za­tional Task Force on Do­mes­tic Dis­as­ters and Acts of Ter­ror­ism has also is­sued a re­quest urg­ing el­i­gi­ble donors across Amer­ica to make and keep do­na­tion ap­point­ments as soon as pos­si­ble.

Blood As­sur­ance is one of many in­de­pen­dent blood cen­ters send­ing blood to Texas dur­ing this time. With the help from these blood cen­ters, more than 2,000 units have been con­trib­uted but the need for ad­di­tional units re­mains at a crit­i­cal level.

Blood is be­ing sent to sup­port the Gulf Coast Re­gional Blood Cen­ter and the Coastal Bend Blood Cen­ter. Carter Blood­care in Dal­las, Texas, is serv­ing as a stag­ing cen­ter to ac­cept in­com­ing ship­ments and driv­ing them to the blood cen­ters in need. Ad­di­tion­ally, the Depart­ment of Health and Hu­man Ser­vices is as­sist­ing with trans­porta­tion of ship­ments to en­sure blood sup­plies are safely de­liv­ered.

To be el­i­gi­ble to do­nate blood, you must be at least 18 years old ( 16 and 17 years old with parental con­sent), weigh 110 pounds or more and be in good health. Donors are asked to drink plenty of flu­ids — avoid­ing caf­feine — and eat a meal that is rich in iron prior to do­nat­ing. To schedule an ap­point­ment at a donor cen­ter or blood drive near you, please visit www.blood­as­sur­ance.org, call 800- 962- 0628 or text ‘BAGIVE’ to 444999.

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