Troy Regional hosting Red Cross blood drive Dec. 28

Published 8:36 pm Tuesday, December 21, 2021

The Red Cross is currently facing its most drastic blood supply shortage in more than a decade.

The Red Cross is Troy Regional Medical Center’s main source for blood. TRMC’s Courtney Pennington, director of lab services, said the Red Cross needs to collect an additional 10,000 blood products each week to overcome the supply challenges needed to meet the needs of patients nationwide.

Pennington said Troy Regional was doing its part to help restock the nation’s blood supply. She said on Dec. 28, from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. the Red Cross will hold a blood drive at the hospital in the second floor classroom.

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Pennington said the hospital has set a goal of 20 units, but she is hopeful the community will pitch in and contribute enough units to surpass the goal by a healthy margin. Pennington said the only requirements are that the donor be 18-years-old and weigh 110-pounds or more to donate blood.

She said TRMC hosts a drive each month and that the Red Cross requires a minimum of 56 days between blood donations. She said if a person donated as much as possible, they could donate blood every other month, or six times a year.

She said it was critical that the blood supply be replenished nation wide. She said according to the Red Cross, the shortage was caused by an increase in 2021 because of the number of trauma cases, organ transplants and elective surgeries requiring blood products depleted the nation’s blood inventory. She said many patients had deferred elective surgeries during the COVID 19 pandemic and had experienced more disease progression and required an increased number of blood transfusions.

She said blood donations also fell dramatically during the recent COVID spike cause by the delta variant.

She said donors can schedule an appointment by visiting redcrossblood.org and scheduling an appointment at TRMC. She said donors could also call 334-670-5416 to schedule an appointment. She said if there is no answer, donors can leave a message and schedule an appointment. She said walk-in donors will also be welcomed the day of the blood drive.

She reminded donors that COVID 19 protocols are still in place at Troy Regional and masks are required. She said donors will also have to submit to a brief screening before entering the hospital.