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NEWS | Aug. 14, 2020

American Red Cross blood drive takes place at Joint Base Charleston

By Senior Airman Cody R Miller Joint Base Charleston Public Affairs

The American Red Cross held a blood drive, Aug. 12, 2020 at the Joint Base Charleston Fitness Center, South Carolina.

“We’re putting on the blood drive today so we can save lives,” said Lorenda Stallworth, collections specialist for the American Red Cross South Carolina Region. “Our goal is to collect 19 pints, if we do more than that then that would be great!”

According to the American Red Cross website, a single blood donation can save up to 3 lives and every 2 seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood.

The Red Cross provides about 40% of our nation’s blood and blood components, all from volunteer donors. With less than 38% of the population eligible, blood can be hard to find resource.

“Donating blood is really easy,” Stallworth said. “You’ll start by getting a mini-physical, which includes blood pressure and hemoglobin checks. After a short list of questions you give blood for about 5-10 minutes and then you’re all done.”

According to the Red Cross website, blood, once donated, is broken down into red blood, plasma and platelets and is disseminated to those in need. Red blood cells, once donated, must be used within 42 days before they expire. Type O blood type is often the most requested by hospitals. Type O-negative red cells can be given to patients of all blood types. Because only 7% of people in the U.S. are type O-negative, it’s always in great demand and often in short supply.

“There’s never enough blood in supply,” said Chief Master Sgt. Jason Colon, 628th Air Base Wing command chief. “I remember even when I was in basic, our training instructors encouraged us to give blood because it’s the right thing to do and good for the community. Giving blood gives someone else the opportunity to live. I would absolutely encourage anyone to come out and give blood, the Red Cross folks here are true professionals and it goes to a good cause.”

The next JB Charleston American Red Cross Blood Drive is scheduled for Oct. 14, 2020 at the fitness center.

For more information on the where you can donate blood, visit: https://www.redcross.org/