Holiday travel brings critical need for blood

Published 12:00 am Thursday, December 28, 2006

Many people are busily contemplating resolutions for the new year during December. Why not end the old year with the best resolution one can make, to save lives through blood donation before December 31?

Because of traditional holiday shortfalls that carry over into January, the American Red Cross is urging donors to close the year out as life-savers by giving blood.

The American Red Cross is charged with providing blood and blood products to over 100 hospitals in the Alabama and Central Gulf Coast Region, and while it may be difficult to find the time to donate amidst the flurry of holiday activity, patients in the region’s hospitals are in desperate need of live-giving blood.

This is a time during which we look back on the year and look forward to the future. For many, it’s a time of cheer, hope and optimism. For those who find themselves in need of blood in our local hospitals, this time of the year can be just the opposite, since collections fall during the holidays while the demand increases.

That’s why eligible donors must continue to give through year’s end to help prevent a shortage from developing.

The American Red Cross and blood donors must be vigilant at all times in order to prevent a shortage in terms of the blood supply.

Every two seconds, someone in our region needs blood to survive. Some 700 donations are needed per day in our region alone just to meet the current need for blood, creating a constantly critical need for donors who roll up their sleeves to save the lives of their neighbors.

The victim of a traffic accident could need between four and 100 units of blood. The average heart bypass patient needs four to six units. The need for blood is constant, but it is in the holiday travel periods that this need is most critical.

On Thursday, December 28, the City of Greenville is holding a blood drive at 119 East Commerce St. The Greenville drive will run from noon until 5 p.m.

All donors at either location will receive a recognition item and cholesterol screening. Donors must be 17 or older, weigh 110 pounds or more, and be able to show a photo ID.

For more information, call 1-888-795-2707 or visit

Be a hero to your neighbors in need and touch countless lives. This holiday season, give someone the best gift they’ll ever receive: the gift of life. There is no greater gift one can give. – ARC