Gift of blood is gift of life |

Gift of blood is gift of life

Whole blood, something that saves lives, has a very short life span of its own. In fact, whole blood lasts only 42 days. This is one reason why the supply needs to be constantly replenished. The other reason is that not very much of it is donated in the first place.

Five percent of the population actually donates blood. Most people are eligible. Whereas some people who do not give blood have valid medical reasons, for most folks, it is the fear of the unknown. What’s inside those bloodmobiles, anyway?

In recent weeks, many generous people in the Glenwood Springs area have donated blood. The bloodmobile from St. Mary’s Regional Blood Center in Grand Junction has visited several locations in our neighborhood. St. Mary’s is the only regional blood center in Western Colorado and serves hospitals of all sizes in the entire western region.

The bloodmobile, which actually is not scary at all, is staffed by a group of kind, caring medical professionals. Recent blood drives, hosted by Colorado Mountain College, the Glenwood Springs Rotary Club, along with other civic groups and Glenwood Springs High School, have been well-attended. Heck, everyone even lived to tell about it. The students and teachers at the high school donated an impressive 39 units.

Jill Serrano, donor recruiter from the St. Mary’s Blood Center, describes what donating blood really means. In her words – it is a gift of life.

The next blood drive in our area will be hosted by the city of Glenwood Springs and Garfield County and is scheduled to be held on Tuesday, May 27, from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. in the City Council Chambers.

If you are considering giving blood, the experts at St. Mary’s would like you to know a couple of things. Although most people can give blood, not everyone’s blood can be accepted. You must weigh more than 112 pounds. You must be either 17 years old with parental permission or be 18 or over. If you got a tattoo recently and are trying to keep it a secret, you’ll be discovered, and you will not be eligible. Also, eat a good breakfast in the morning if you plan to donate blood.

The staff from St. Mary’s will conduct a confidential interview, perform a mini physical and, don’t panic, stick your finger to draw a tiny bit of blood to test for iron.

If you are eligible, you will be well taken care of and you’ll be taking care of someone else.

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