Cheatham County Woman Reaches 50 Gallon Milestone
Judy B. Jacobs is 11th 50 Gallon Blood Donor in Tennessee Valley Region
(Nashville, Tenn., Sept. 27, 2011)
Judy B. Jacobs is one of just 11 names, two of them females, on the 50 gallon donor plaque for the Tennessee Valley Blood Services Region of the American Red Cross. She achieved this milestone after years of donating whole blood and platelets.
On Friday, Sept. 23, Jacobs gave her 400th platelet donation at the Nashville Donor Center, which boosted her to the level of 50 gallon blood donor. Staff surprised Jacobs with a 400th platelet donation pin, a 50 gallon donor pin, a certificate, a Red Cross Blanket and the addition of her name to the 50 gallon donor plaque. The plaque hangs in the refreshment area at the TVR headquarters located at 2201 Charlotte Ave. in Nashville.
“We can manufacture just about anything these days, but we cannot make a substitute for blood. Do you know anyone who has ever had a transfusion? The blood that patient received did not come out of some big factory. It came out of the arm of someone just like me, a volunteer who gave time so that someone might survive a car crash, a major operation or a terrible disease that would otherwise have meant death. Blood donors are life savers. Blood donors are heroes. Being a hero, a life saver, need not mean lifting a train car from a trapped victim, or rushing into a burning building, or fighting wild animals. It can be as relatively easy as answering some personal questions, getting a free mini-physical examination, and lying in a comfortable chair for a while before getting snacks. You will not have parades in your honor, and nobody will ever think of building you a free house or naming a road or a bridge for you. But every day someone may continue to have the gift of life, to see loved ones, do important work, appreciate beauty, and it can be because of blood donors - ordinary folks who roll up their sleeves. You can do it. I did,” says Jacobs.
“The Red Cross is grateful for the contribution Ms. Jacobs made to the blood program throughout the years. It’s the dedicated volunteer blood donors like her who help meet the needs of hospital patients in our communities. Ms. Jacobs should be proud of this outstanding accomplishment,” says Tim Ryerson, CEO, Tennessee Valley Region.
Platelet pheresis is another way to donate blood. A cell separator is used to collect only the platelets and return the red cells and plasma to you. The body replenishes the platelets within 36 to 48 hours of donation.
The concentrated dose of platelets donated through platelet pheresis is as many as five to six times the amount of platelets the Red Cross can collect in a whole blood donation. Platelet pheresis products are usually transfused within three or four days. Platelet cells are fragile and can only survive outside the human body for as few as five days, making it necessary to continually replenish the supply available to patients.
“The Red Cross is continually looking for new platelet donors, especially people with blood types A+, AB+ and AB-. Now is a great time to start giving platelets. Follow Ms. Jacob’s lead and you might reach the 50 gallon milestone someday,” says Ryerson.
You can donate platelet pheresis at the Nashville and Murfreesboro donor centers. For more information or to schedule your blood donation appointment, call 1-800-RED CROSS or visit redcrossblood.org.
How to Donate Blood:
Call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit redcrossblood.org for more information or to make an appointment. All blood types are needed to ensure the Red Cross maintains an adequate blood supply. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Donors must be in general good health, weigh at least 110 pounds and be at least 17 years old (16 with completed Parental Consent Form). New height and weight restrictions apply to donors 18 and younger.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation's blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.