If you’ve ever dreamt about being a hero and saving lives, now is the time and chance to do just that.
Blood banks all over the country are in constant need of new donors to help replenish their supply as it becomes low, especially at the beginning of each new year.
This week Diana Eldridge with the Central Illinois Community Blood Center joined our WLDS’ AM Conversation to discuss what the centers need this time of year: “Unfortunately we’ve really taken a big hit. The holiday times are busy for people and the blood donations tend to drop off around the holidays as it is, and now you factor in all the illnesses and the cold weather, we are a couple hundred units short. One unit helps three critically ill patients, so that gives you an idea of how many people could be impacted by this shortage right now.”
Eldridge also explains the different kinds of way you can give blood: “We have the platelets and the plasma, that all drives our set up to take those at the time. I know at Passavant Hospital they have one drive a month where they just do platelets, so if you’re interested in that, it would be really good to call the (blood) center and find out the criteria. It’s not the same as giving blood.”
Flu, colds, and other illnesses are also prevalent this time of year, and Edridge tells us how to handle wanting to give blood but feeling under the weather: “If you’re really not feeling well, if you’re new on antibiotics, it’s best to not give (blood) at this time. But if you just have the cold kind of hanging on, which they tend to do…as long as you’re feeling good and you’ve eaten a good meal and you’re well hydrated and have had enough sleep then I’d say you can go ahead and go in there. They’ll test your iron levels and some other factors before they decide if you can give (blood) or not.”
For more information on how and where to give, call (217) 753-1530 or go online to bloodcenter.org