American Red Cross to host semi-annual blood drive

By Staff Writer
March 30, 2006

Shane Evans

Cabrini College’s health services, with the assistance of the American Red Cross, will be hosting its semi-annual blood drive on April 3.

At the time of their designated appointment, participants will gather in the dining hall of the mansion between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.

“I don’t think I need to stress the importance of blood donation. But, I will say that this is a wonderful opportunity for relatively healthy young-adults to make a difference within the community,” Susan Fitzgerald, the college nurse, said.

As of March 7, the American Red Cross for the Pennsylvania and New Jersey region released a blood supply update, which urgently appealed to healthy volunteers to donate blood.

According to this report, the regional blood inventory is quite low. Meanwhile, with more than 100 hospitals in the southeastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey community who order an average of 2,000 blood products each and every day, the demand is constantly visible.

The minimum safe level of blood required by the local region is anything above a two-day supply, whereas a five-day supply is the optimal safe level. Currently, according to the March 7 update, all blood types are below a five-day supply, and three of eight different blood types are well below the two-day standard.

In the last blood drive held on campus, which was Nov. 7, 2005, Cabrini had enlisted 51 donors and hoped to produce 40 units. Unfortunately, this goal was not met; the entire event produced 35 units.

Fitzgerald said, “There are still many appointment times open, and I strongly encourage anyone who is interested to sign-up. Though walk-ins are accepted, making an appointment would be much better. Having set times allows the American Red Cross to know how many professionals to send.”

There is a push for the participation of African-Americans. This is because, according to the Red Cross, the best match for an African-American suffering from sickle cell disease usually comes from an African-American donor.

Sloan Harrison, a sophomore psychology major, said, “As an African-American, I think donating blood that could possibly help someone with sickle cell disease is a big deal. In general, giving blood is great. It’s good for people to be involved in a cause, but I’m terrified of needles. I was going to donate blood once, but I was unable to overcome my fear. Maybe this time I’ll conquer my fear.”

However, the call of duty extends far beyond African-Americans. Health services, the Red Cross and students emphasize the importance of campus-wide participation.

Marybeth Tray, a sophomore education major, said, “Blood donors save lives, and I think it is great that Cabrini holds semi-annual blood drives. Talk about performing community service. There is no greater service that I can do for my community.”

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Posted to the web by Shane Evans

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