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Blood drive hosts, volunteers, donors needed amid ongoing pandemic

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In times of need, people come together to support one another. The American Red Cross is asking organizations and individuals to step up to help patients experiencing health crises by hosting blood drives, volunteering as blood drive screeners or donating blood or platelets.

With stay-at-home orders in place for the entire Penn Jersey Blood Region, many locations that typically host blood drives remain closed. As a result, the Red Cross is looking for air-conditioned sites that are willing to host a series of blood drives throughout the summer. To learn more about hosting a blood drive and to sign up, visit RedCrossBlood.org/HostADrive.

The Red Cross is also in need of volunteers to serve as blood donor screeners at blood drives throughout the Penn Jersey region. These volunteers are responsible for greeting and thanking donors, taking donor temperatures and sanitizing blood drive registration and canteen areas. No special skills are required, and gloves, sanitizer, masks and training are provided. To learn more about volunteer opportunities at the Red Cross and to sign up, visit redcross.org/volunteertoday.

As COVID-19 continues to affect everyday life, people may not be thinking about blood donation. But blood and platelets are needed daily to help patients battling disease and facing the unexpected. Donating blood is an easy way to care for each other and ensure hospitals have the blood products patients rely on.

As a thank-you for helping ensure a stable blood supply, all who come to give blood or platelets through May 31 will receive a special Red Cross “We’re all in this together” T-shirt, by mail, while supplies last. Donors must have a valid email address on file to claim their T-shirt.

Healthy individuals who are feeling well are asked to make an appointment to donate this May by downloading the free Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enabling the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device. Donors are asked to schedule an appointment prior to arriving at the drive and are required to wear a face covering or mask while at the drive, in alignment with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention public guidance. Each Red Cross blood drive and donation center follows the highest standards of safety and infection control, and additional precautions – including social distancing and face coverings for donors and staff – have been implemented to safeguard donors, volunteers and employees.

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