By MELINDA WILLIAMS
Virginia Blood Services (VBS) is urging the public to “Be the Giving Type” by giving the gift of blood this holiday season.
Although patient needs stay the same, blood supplies typically dwindle during the winter months, particularly when people get caught up in holiday activities and travel. Donors, especially those with Rh Negative type, are in need to help replenish the local blood supply.
VBS is the sole supplier of blood for over 20 hospitals throughout Virginia. The organization also supplies dialysis centers.
“We are in need of all blood types – especially Rh Negative – to assure we maintain our blood supply for the hospital patients in our community,” says Julie Moore, VBS executive director. “Donations decline during the holiday season, so we are asking Virginians to help support local patients and respond by giving blood the next couple weeks.”
According to VBS, it’s important for donors to eat before donating blood. Donors also must be at least 16 years old, but written consent from the parent or guardian is required for 16-year-old donors.
For more details on specific health requirements to be a blood donor, visit www.vablood.org/donors/eligibility.
If you still have questions about whether you qualify to be a donor, you can sign up at the blood drive, fill out a donor history form and speak with a blood service representative.
Donors may call 800-989-4438 to schedule an appointment at a VBS blood donor center.
Upcoming American Red Cross blood drives in Pulaski County will be held Monday, Dec. 30, 1-6 p.m., at AmeriCare Plus, 1184. E. Main St., Pulaski and Monday, Jan. 20, noon-6 p.m., at Dublin Lions Club building, 1036 Bagging Plant Road, Dublin.