Step up to the plate and give blood

Patients at local hospitals depend on blood donations. Give someone the gift of life this fall and donate blood Monday, June 19, at City Hall. Memorial Blood Centers is teaming up with the Minnesota Twins to give blood donors a chance to win premium Minnesota Twins tickets. All donors from May 25–June 30 are automatically entered into weekly drawings. Visit mbc.org/twins for details.

The Memorial Blood Center bloodmobile will be at City Hall from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Most people who are in good health and weigh at least 110 pounds may donate blood. Although all blood types are needed, the need is especially urgent for Type O-negative and Type O-positive blood right now.

Sign up to donate

To schedule a time slot, go to www.mbc.org/searchdrives (enter sponsor code 0960) or contact Maija Schmelzer at mschmelzer@mbc.org or 651-332-7167. Registering to donate blood is encouraged, but you can also register on the day at the table in the City Hall Rotunda.

This spring, Memorial Blood Centers has added new software that gives you the option of scheduling “double red cell” donations online at some locations. It uses a new machine that draws nearly twice the red blood cells while returning plasma and platelets back to the donor. Patients benefit by receiving two units from the same donor, reducing exposure to multiple donors which can sometimes cause post-transfusion complications.

About donating blood

Be sure to eat before donating, and bring an ID card. Anyone who donates should not have any cold or flu symptoms for three days before the blood drive.

Typically, it takes about an hour to donate blood from the time you sign in until the time you leave. When you arrive, a staff member will make sure you’re eligible. That involves a few basic health questions; the names of any medications you’re taking; and checking your pulse, blood pressure, temperature and red-blood-cell level.

All blood collection equipment is sterile and used only once. Collecting a unit of blood takes between 10 and 25 minutes. You may feel a small pinch when the needle is inserted, but most donors say they don’t feel any discomfort for the remainder of the donation. After your donation, you will be given some refreshments to help replenish your fluids. Then you’re ready to resume your normal daily activities.

 

 

Published May 31, 2017

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