08/19/04 — Blood supplies low as holiday approaches

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Blood supplies low as holiday approaches

By Becky Barclay
Published in News on August 19, 2004 2:05 PM

With blood already low and the Labor Day holiday fast approaching, the Wayne County Chapter of the American Red Cross is trying to keep supplies from dipping to a critical level.

Types O and A are already low, said Don Best, blood services director.

Best said there are normally blood shortages over the long Labor Day weekend because of more people being on the road finishing up vacations.

"We need people to realize that blood cannot be artificially manufactured," he said. "We just need people to come in and donate."

Best said the local chapter has made its goal at July and August blood drives. But the need is still there and the drive continues.

About 1,500 units of blood are needed each day in the more than 100 hospitals served by the Red Cross, according to Best. He said some of the blood needs are due to premature babies, accident victims, cancer patients and patients recovering from surgery.

The local chapter has picked up four new Bloodmobile sponsors this month. They are North Carolina Natural Gas Co., Southeastern Medical Oncology Center, First Pentecostal Holiness Church and Chili's Grill and Bar.

Best said the Red Cross will have its bus at the Chili's blood drive. Each person who donates blood will receive a $5 gift certificate from the restaurant.

Blood drives through Labor Day include:

*Aug. 25: Wayne Christian School from 1:30 to 6 p.m.

*Aug. 26: Red Cross chapter house at 600 N. George St. from 2 to 6:30 p.m. by appointment only by calling 735-7201 and Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from 2 to 6:30 p.m.

*Aug 27: Southeastern Medical Oncology Center from 12:30 to 5 p.m.

*Aug. 28: First Pentecostal Church from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

*Aug. 30: Chili's from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

*Aug. 31: New Hope United Methodist Church from 3 to 7 p.m.

*Sept. 4: Berkeley Mall from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

For blood drives Aug. 27, 28 and 30, donors will receive a coupon for a free car wash from Adam's Auto Wash and a free Red Cross T-shirt for the drive at the mall.

The Red Cross is urging Wayne County residents to celebrate Labor Day and mark the end of summer by donating blood. "We'd like to see people lined up at all these blood drives," Best said.