WNYT NewsChannel 13 is teaming up with the American Red Cross for its annual Save a Life Blood Drive. The blood drive will be held Thursday, April 13 from 1- 7 p.m. at the following locations:
· Gideon Putnam Hotel, 24 Gideon Putnam Road, Saratoga Springs
· Via Port Rotterdam, 93 Campbell Avenue, Schenectady
· Radisson Hotel, 205 Wolf Road, Albany
The Red Cross must collect nearly 14,000 blood and platelet donations every day for patients in need. In the New York-Penn Region which includes New York and 10 counties in Pennsylvania, approximately 1000 units are collected every day to serve patients in about 90 hospitals. Blood and platelets are needed for accident and burn victims, heart surgery and organ transplant patients, and those receiving treatment for leukemia, cancer or sickle cell disease.
During National Volunteer Month in April, the Red Cross celebrates the millions of volunteers who help fulfill its lifesaving mission and invites others to get involved. Nearly 2.8 million generous people donated blood or platelets through the Red Cross last year. Volunteers are the only source of blood and platelets for hospital patients in need of transfusions. The American Red Cross encourages eligible blood donors to donate blood this spring to ensure a sufficient supply for patients at approximately 2,600 hospitals across the country.
Donated blood is perishable and must constantly be replenished to keep up with hospital patient need. Red blood cells are the blood component most frequently transfused by hospitals and must be used within 42 days of donation.
To make an appointment to give blood, download the free Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). Use sponsor code WNYT Presenting donors will receive a free Red Cross tee-shirt.
Eligible donors can give red blood cells through either a regular whole blood donation or a double red cell donation, where available. During a double red cell donation, two units of red blood cells are collected while most of the plasma and platelets are returned to the donor. Double red cell donors must meet additional eligibility criteria, which will be determined at the donation appointment.
Donors with all blood types are needed, especially those with types O, A negative and B negative. Whole blood can be donated every 56 days, up to six times a year, and double red cells may be donated every 112 days, up to three times per year.
How to donate blood
Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
Blood donors can now save time at their next donation by using RapidPass to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, prior to arriving at the blood drive. To get started and learn more, visit redcrossblood.org/RapidPass and follow the instructions on the site.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.