Event organizer Sandra Gonzales with the Rotary Club visits with City Councilor Michelle Martinez who is donating blood. Martinez's daughter Michaela joins her mom for the event but is too young to donate (yet). Valley Daily Post photo
Residents Come Out For Community Blood Drive
Española – 26 heroes came out Saturday morning to help save lives. A blood drive sponsored by Rotary Club of Española, in partnership with the City of Española, was held at the Española Arts Education Center (in the old post office building on Bond Street) Saturday, April 8 to ensure that patients in our community, and throughout the state, have life-saving blood when needed. According to the United Blood Services, one in five hospitalized patients will need a blood transfusion and only volunteer blood donors can meet this need.
United Blood Service personnel on site at the Saturday event said New Mexico faces a shortage in blood donations. Donated blood is tested and then sent to hospitals where it is needed. Blood has a 53 day shelf life but is typically used within a few days after it becomes available.
Saturday’s event set a goal of 26 units and they just made that goal. Hospitals around the state, including here in the Valley need more blood on a daily basis and people are encouraged to donate.
The Rotary club plans to hold another blood drive in the area later this year, and other organizations, such as the Rio Grande Sun newspaper hold regular blood drives. All blood types are needed, but especially type O negative which is the universal blood type and can be given to all patients. Blood donors can learn their blood types after donating.
To learn when a blood drive will be happening near you go to www.UnitedBloodServices.org or call 505-246-1457. With each donation, donors receive a free total cholesterol test and can earn points in United Blood Services’ Hero in Me rewards program. Points can be redeemed for Amazon.com gift coupons, t-shirts, movie tickets and more.
Volunteer blood donors must be at least 16, weigh a minimum of 110 pounds and be in good health. Additional height/weight requirements apply to donors 22 and younger, and donors who are 16 and 17 must have signed permission from a parent or guardian.
United Blood Services has been this area’s non-profit community blood provider since 1951 and serves patients in 45 hospitals in New Mexico and the Four Corners Region. The United Blood Services network is one of the nation’s oldest and largest non-profit blood service organizations and is a founding member of America’s Blood Centers and the AABB (formerly the American Association of Blood Banks).