Need for blood is crucial
Published 12:00 am Thursday, October 23, 2003
Every two seconds, someone in America needs blood. Every day, 38,000 donations are needed in the United States, which includes the 600 to 700 needed here in the Mid-Atlantic Region every single day to help save the lives of cancer patients, accident victims, children with blood disorders among others. Since Hurricane Isabel struck, the need for blood has become crucial, and the American Red Cross is holding blood drives across the area to replenish the supply.
Faye G. Byrum, executive director of the Suffolk Chapter of Red Cross, said the American Red Cross Mid-Atlantic Blood Services National Save A Life Tour 2003 (SALT), will visit the Hampton Roads area this month.
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&uot;SALT 2003 is one of the largest initiatives in Red Cross history to raise awareness of the daily need for blood,&uot; said Byrum. &uot;SALT is designed to educate the public about the nation’s critically low blood supply. We also want to encourage all age-eligible people to donate blood regularly to help alleviate future shortages.&uot;
She said the convoy of Red Cross vehicles also includes an interactive mobile museum.
&uot;We want to focus on community involvement during this particularly difficult time in the history of blood collection nationwide,&uot; said Byrum. &uot;The tour is expected to bring in 3 million blood donations nationwide during the six months it’s traveling across the nation. I hope that citizens of Suffolk will be just as generous as they have in the past in giving blood – the gift of life.&uot;
A major attraction of the tour in the Mid-Atlantic Region will be educational and entertainment events featuring a fun, interactive mobile museum showing how blood is used and why people are needed to donate blood regularly. She said there would also be quiz shows, games, fun and prizes for all who visit it.
&uot;We invite you to come to the tour events set to begin Oct. 31, at The Gallery in Military Circle, at 880, North Military Highway,&uot; said Byrum. &uot;The tour will be there from 1 to 7 p.m. It will be at Coliseum Mall at 1800 West Mercury Boulevard on Nov. 1, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
&uot;This blood shortage affects every single one of us, where we work, live and play – whether it’s a friend, family or neighbor who needs blood,&uot; she said. &uot;If you can give only one pint, that’s could help save as many as three lives. Anyone who is 17 or older, weighs 110 pounds or more and is generally in good health is probably eligible to give.&uot;
Those who would like to make an appointment to give blood should call 1-800-448-3543.