100 Days of Summer, 100 Days of Hope blood drive

Updated: 06/26/2014 5:27 PM
Created: 06/26/2014 4:15 PM WHEC.com
By: Rebecca Fath

Summer is one of the toughest times for the Red Cross to get the crucial blood donations patients across our area need. That's why News10NBC has teamed up with the Red Cross to help get blood to people who need it most right here in our community.

The "100 Days of Summer, 100 Days of Hope" blood drive started at 12 p.m. and runs until 7 p.m. at the DoubleTree Hotel on Jefferson Road in Henrietta.

We spoke with one man who started donating blood later in life when he saw wounded young soldiers suffering. Vietnam veteran Paul Gill said, “A lot of these fellas come back and they're in for more and more operations. You see a lot of them over at the VA. There's a need, there's a big need.”

Through his time spent at VA hospitals, Gill has gotten to know injured soldiers in need of blood. He says that’s part of what drives him to keep coming back. “You just feel fortunate for yourself and you wish that you could do anything for them.”

Many donors we spoke with today agree. They feel obligated to come and give life to those in need and the Red Cross says it’s especially important in summer months. Gill said, “It doesn't cost anything.  It's free to help another person and it's the right thing to do.”

Blood donation facts from the American Red Cross Blood Services:

  • The summer season historically sees a decline in blood donations due to many blood donors vacationing and fewer blood drives being sponsored by schools.
  • The need for blood is constant. It’s the blood that is already on the shelves that helps save lives before, during and after a disaster. 
  • Every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood.
  • Approximately 44,000 units of blood are needed each day across the United States.
  • Local blood donors are needed all year round to ensure the blood supply stays strong.
  • A single car accident victim can require as many as 100 pints of blood.
  • Only 5 percent of the eligible population donates blood.
  • In New York State, individuals who are at least 17 years of age, 16 with parental permission, meet weight and height requirements (110 pounds or more, depending on their height) and are in general good health may be eligible to donate blood. Identification is required at the time of donation.

There are four easy steps to donating blood:

  • Registration
  • Private medical history review with trained specialists and mini-physical including blood pressure, temperature, pulse and iron level check
  • Blood donation for approximately 7-10 minutes
  • Rest and enjoy refreshments

For Red Cross eligibility guidelines and appointment scheduling, please call 1-800-RED CROSS or visit www.redcrossblood.org.

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