Donors needed to prevent summer blood shortage

CONYERS — Busy summer schedules often mean that activities such as donating blood can fall by the wayside. With that in mind, the American Red Cross is asking that blood and platelet donors help prevent a summer shortage by making an appointment to roll up a sleeve and make a donation.

“Vacations and other summer activities often conflict with donation appointments for regular blood donors, which makes summer a very difficult time to collect blood donations,” said Jerry J.K. Tillery, CEO of the Southern Blood Services region, which serves Georgia and parts of South Carolina and north Florida. “Donations decline further near summer holidays like Independence Day. A blood or platelet donation now can help sustain an adequate blood supply this summer.”

According to the Red Cross, 15,000 blood donations are needed every day to meet the needs of patients across the country. During June, July and August, an average of two fewer donors schedule an appointment to give blood at each Red Cross Blood drive than what patients need.

With blood and platelet donation appointments currently less than what is needed to maintain a sufficient blood supply, donors of all types are urged to schedule an appointment. Types that are especially needed are O negative, B negative and A negative.

As an added incentive, anyone who donates blood or platelets through July 7 will receive a commemorative Red Cross T-shirt, while supplies last.

Upcoming blood drives in this area include:

• Friday, July 4, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., American Legion Post 77, 674 American Legion Road, Conyers;

• Sunday, July 6, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., Big Miller Grove Baptist Church, 3800 Big Miller Grove Way, Lithonia;

• Monday, July 7, 3 to 7 p.m.; Bruster’s Ice Cream, 1172 Dogwood Drive, Conyers;

• Monday, July 7, 2 to 7 p.m., Eastridge Community Church, 863 Ga. Highway 142 East, Covington;

• Friday, July 11, 3 to 7 p.m., Walmart Supercenter 459, 10300 Industrial Blvd., Covington;

• Monday, July 14, 3 to 7 p.m., Conyers First United Methodist Church, 921 N. Main St., Conyers;

• Friday, July 18, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Rockdale County Sheriff’s Office, 911 Chambers Drive, Conyers;

• Friday, July 18, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Georgia Violets Junior Woman’s Club, DAP Theater, 2125 A Pace St., Covington;

• Monday, July 21, 1 to 7 p.m., St. Augustine Catholic Church, 11524 U.S. Highway 278 East, Covington;

• Wednesday, July 23, 1 to 7 p.m., The Church At Covington, 11975 Ga. Highway 142 North, Oxford.

To make an appointment for one of these blood drives or to find other donation locations and times, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-733-2767.