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Blood drives’ success continues

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Bandera County contributed 140 units of blood in 2020 during the pandemic in just five blood drives.

With 11 blood drives scheduled in 2021, donors can save twice as many lives this year.

This includes whole blood, double red blood, and plasma donations. For every whole blood donation, three lives can be saved, and you can donate every 56 days.

Platelets are cells that help stop bleeding, have a shelf life of five days and are constantly needed for traumatic injury, cancer and transplant patients.

Bandera donors have already exceeded in two months the dual red blood cell donations in all of 2020! This means you just give red cells. More than 60 percent of blood transfusions use red cells: vital for surgeries.

A donor at Silver Sage in April shared that she donated because “during childbirth, I required eight units to survive” the ordeal; mother and child continue to be very healthy.

Another donating hero identified that without someone’s donation of blood a motorcycle accident would have been the end of his life.

These stories are from members of our community who are paying it back so others can live.

The next opportunity to donate life is Saturday, April 17 at the Lakehills Community Center, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Appointments can be made by calling 210-731-5555 or https://donor.southtexasblood.org/donor/schedules/drive_schedule/125048. Donors can establish an account if they like to earn rewards points to redeem for hundreds of gift cards. You can also join the marrow registry there.

Eligibility is easy and if you’re concerned about medications, international travel, or other health concerns, just call the number above. A COVID vaccination does not preclude donation, unless the vaccination site is infected.

Donations, especially O-negative are always in great demand and can be transfused to patients of all blood types: think emergency medical situations. All blood types are still needed as the pandemic continues to keep the number of donors in our region at record lows.

Other local groups are encouraged to sponsor additional drives: school groups, nonprofits, first responders, and more.

Sign up by calling Susan at 210-788-9160.

Future events include April 17 at the Lakehills Community Center and May 22 at the Silver Sage Community Center.