Summer blood drive saves 165 lives

Posted on: August 08, 2013

During summer’s height, many people depart for vacation, but the need for blood never takes a day off. College of the Mainland’s two-day blood drive, in partnership with the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center, collected 55 total donations, which will help save 165 lives in a critical time.
 
“Summer is one of our lowest times of the year for donations,” said Lynn Raggio, of the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center.
 
At the two-day drive students, staff and community members, many of whom are regular donors, came to give the gift of life.

“I donate every quarter,” said Joe Giusti, of the Galveston County Police Department, who donated double red blood cells. Double red blood cells are in demand as the most-used blood component for surgery, trauma and treatment of blood disorders, according to the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center’s website.
 
At other stations, donors gave whole blood. Each whole blood donation is used to save three lives.
 
At the blood drive the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center also debuted the HemoFlow, a tool which takes into account a person’s weight, height and gender and to automatically calculate the exact amount of blood to draw. This helps ensure that each donor’s experience is a positive one.

Besides the knowledge that their donation is saving lives, donors received points redeemable at Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center online store, which features items from T-shirts to technology.
 
“We’ve got everything but a brand new car,” joked Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center employee Mark McDonald.
 
COM’s next blood drive is scheduled for Oct. 2-3 from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the COM Student Center. The college regularly hosts blood drives, and the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center gave COM the award “College/Educational Group of the Year” for going above and beyond in its blood drives in 2012.

Regular donor Joe Guisti, of the Galveston County Police Department, prepares to donate double red blood cells.


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