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Blood donors needed

By Rachel Wartian

Staff Writer

As the curve of COVID-19 cases has flattened, hospitals have now begun to resume with non-emergency surgeries. This brings an urgent need for blood donations.

As some businesses remain closed and remote during this pandemic, cancellations of blood drives continue. The need for more blood donations has risen 30 percent now that the health care field can adjust their services.

“Blood donors have played a vital role in the lives of patients who have needed lifesaving transfusions during this pandemic, and patients continue to depend on donors each and every day,” said Paul Sullivan, senior vice president of Red Cross Blood Services.

To help with the need, Amazon has partnered with the Red Cross to give those who donate blood during the month of June a $5 gift card via email.

Blood donations are a continuous need even during normal times. Platelets in the blood need to be used within five days of donation, and red blood cells need to be used within 42 days. With the end of the pandemic still unknown, donors and blood drives are need more than ever.

Blood donation centers are using the highest standards of safety. Donors and staff will be required to wear face coverings and have their temperature checked. Appointments can be made to help maintain proper social distancing and avoid overcrowding of donation areas.

Suffolk has the following scheduled blood drives for June:

  • June 8, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Suffolk Family YMCA Youth Center, 2769 Godwin Blvd., organized by Suffolk Business Women
  • June 10, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Hilton Garden Inn Riverfront & Suffolk Conference Center, 100 E. Constance Road
  • June 10, noon to 4 p.m., Dominion Virginia Power Recreation Building, 5272 Godwin Blvd.
  • June 15, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Community Church Suffolk Campus, 1242 Holland Road
  • June 15, 3 to 7 p.m., Healing Chapel Baptist Church, 2375 Godwin Blvd.
  • June 19, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., City Hall, 442 W. Washington St.
  • June 22, 1 to 7 p.m., HUB 757, Home of Believers Church, 6801 Bridgeway Drive

Make an appointment by going on the free Red Cross Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org, calling 1-800-733-2767, or enabling Blood Donor Skill on an Alexa Echo device.