Blood Donor Day set for March 3 in Waukon

During the winter months, blood donations are especially needed to help prevent a critical blood shortage. Local hospital patients rely on life-saving blood donations from volunteer blood donors. Help is needed to guarantee an adequate blood supply is available at all times.
The next LifeServe Blood Center blood drive will be held Thursday, March 3 from 12:30-5:30 p.m. The blood drive will be held at the First Baptist Church in south Waukon.
Blood drives are held the first Thursday of every month in Waukon to allow for more donors to give. The LifeServe Blood Center supplies Veterans Memorial Hospital with its blood and blood products. Here are some interesting blood facts from the LifeServe Blood Center:
• Every three seconds someone needs blood.
• Blood makes up about eight percent of a person’s body weight.
• Blood is needed every minute of every day; summer, winter, spring and fall.
• Scheduled surgeries are not cancelled in Iowa because of a lack of blood, but it is a problem in other parts of the nation.
• Donating blood includes a health check for the donor (checking blood pressure, pulse, temperature and hemoglobin) prior to donating.
• There is absolutely no way to contract any disease from giving blood.
• Blood can be split into different components (red cells, platelets, plasma, and cryoprecipitate) and used to help different types of patients.
Regular blood donors may donate blood as often as every 56 days. First-time donors will find that donating blood is a safe and easy way to save lives and make a difference in the community.  One single blood donation can save the lives of up to three sick or injured hospital patients.
The donation process is simple:
1. Eat a healthy meal and drink plenty of fluids at least four hours prior to donating.
2. Bring proper identification, such as a donor card or a driver’s license.
3. Complete a health history questionnaire and screening interview.
4. Receive a brief health check by trained staff. This includes a check of blood pressure, pulse, temperature and blood iron levels.
5. Sit back while a unit of blood, approximately one pint, is collected. This process takes around 10 minutes.
6. Enjoy refreshments while relaxing for 10-15 minutes before leaving the facility.

The blood that is collected is tested carefully. In fact, all blood that is collected by any blood collection center is all tested the same, according to the federal regulations.
To help maintain Iowa’s blood supply, donate at the Waukon Community Blood Drive Thursday, March 3 at the First Baptist Church in south Waukon. Appointments are encouraged and walk-ins can only be accepted as the schedule permits. To schedule an appointment, call the LifeServe Blood Center at 800-287-4903.