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American Red Cross plans blood drives for flu season

An American Red Cross Blood Drive
American Red Cross Central & Southern Ohio Region
An American Red Cross Blood Drive

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is predicting a serious flu season this year. That could impact blood supplies nationwide.

To prevent this, the American Red Cross is launching preemptive blood drives to get blood now.

During cold and flu season, blood drive numbers have historically decreased. People get busier getting with family, buying presents – and getting sick more often.

This means that there are less healthy blood and platelet donors, which could endanger blood supplies.

“An increase in sick people is a decrease in available donors for us,” Don Hawkins, the regional communications manager with the Red Cross Central & Southern Ohio Regions, said. “So that’s kind of an issue, especially whenever we’re looking at our hospitals that are in need of keeping their stockpile up as donors go down.”

That’s why the Red Cross is planning drives now so that people can plan ahead. They also have some added perks – prizes for donors.

Those who donate from Nov. 23-27 will get a Red Cross knit beanie while supplies last. Donors from Nov. 28 - Dec. 15 will receive a $10 Amazon gift card.

Hawkins continued, “It’s our way of thanking our donors for taking the time out of their day to help improve the lives of folks in their community and help ensure that we are able to get the lifesaving blood product out to the people that need it.”

The regional communications manager also said if you're feeling ill, it's better to reschedule than try and donate.

To learn more about what you need to do in order to donate, visit RedCrossBlood.org.

Upcoming blood donation opportunities from Nov. 16-30:

Clark County

Springfield

11/30/2022: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., The Ohio Masonic Home, 2655 W. National Road

Logan County

Russells Point

11/23/2022: 8 a.m. - 2 p.m., Indian Lake Community Church, 121 Orchard Island Rd

Montgomery County

Kettering

11/29/2022: 12:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m., American Legion Kettering-Post 598, 5700 Kentshire Dr.

Garrett is a WYSO intern and graduate of University of Dayton. He spent time covering the Dayton area with WDTN Channel 2 News after the 2019 Memorial Day Tornado outbreak. It was around this time that he began listening to NPR and fell in love with radio-based journalism. Garrett graduated from UD in May of 2021 with his Bachelor’s in Communications with a focus in journalism and graduated in May of 2022 with his Master’s. While not working at WYSO, Garrett is an avid reader, loves to play video games, and hanging out with his friends.