All it takes to potentially save three lives is about an hour of one’s time and a pint of blood.
Every pint donated is separated into red blood cells, platelets and plasma. Each is typed, tested and screened to ensure no diseases are present and then stored.
The blood is shipped throughout the area to medical centers in need and used as needed.
Donated blood can help patients in various ways. It can be used for those undergoing organ transplants or cancer treatments. Donated blood is used in emergency rooms and surgical rooms for trauma patients. It is used in delivery rooms for newborns and their mothers.
During the summer and winter months, there tends to be more of a demand and less supply.
The South Texas Blood and Tissue Center is always looking for new and returning donors to help fill the organization’s shelves.
To donate, you should be in good health, be at least 17 years old or older — 16 with a parental consent form — and you should weigh at least 110 pounds.
After signing up to donate, there is a health history form to fill out followed by a screening process that takes about 30 minutes and includes taking vital signs, temperatures, blood pressure and iron level checks.
Once that is completed, a technician will finish the process of collecting the donation.
It’s quick, easy and relatively painless.
Roll up a sleeve, help save a life or three.