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Health Department: Blood Donors Sought to Boost Supply

Blood donations typically drop off during the winter months and residents are encouraged to donate blood.

Written by Mary Ann Lopez

With blood in short supply during the winter months, the DuPage County Health Department is encouraging residents to donate blood to help save lives.

January is National Blood Donor Month. Blood tends to be in short supply during winter because people take vacations, travel, weather tends to be worse and more people become ill.

Blood centers also rely on high schools and colleges hosting blood drives and those are on break early in the year. Blood drives at schools provide about 15 percent of regional blood collections, according to the DuPage County Health Department.

Once blood is donated it can be separated into several components including red blood cells, platelets and plasma. A single blood donation can help save the lives of up to three people, according to the health department.

People can donate a pint of blood every 56 days, according to the health department. An adult of average weight has about 10 to 12 units of blood, so one pint is easy to spare. Donors may one day receive blood in return, since one out of three people will need a life-saving blood transfusion in his or her lifetime.

“Approximately every two seconds, someone needs blood,” according to the health department spokesman David Hass. “Four million Americans would die each year without it, and the only place to get this precious resource is from volunteer blood donors. Every day in the United States, approximately 39,000 units of blood are needed in hospitals and emergency treatment facilities for patients with cancer and other diseases, for organ transplant recipients, and to help save the lives of accident victims.”

Find locations to donate blood visit:

LifeSource 

Heartland Blood Centers 

American Red Cross 

 

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