AP NEWS

Blood Assurance needs B- and several other blood types

January 2, 2019

Nonprofit regional blood center Blood Assurance, which has an donor center in Fort Oglethorpe, is calling on community members to make a blood donation at a local donor center or bloodmobile as soon as possible. Blood Assurance is in critical need of B-negative blood and is in urgent need of A-positive, A-negative, O-negative, and O-positive blood.

“We are in serious need of blood at this time,” said Dr. Elizabeth Culler, medical director at Blood Assurance. “We always see higher usage on New Year’s Eve, and at this time our blood supply is in critical need. Patients in our hospitals are counting on donors in our community to save lives.”

Each donation of blood contains plasma, red blood cells and platelets that can be used to save up to three lives. Patients undergoing surgery, receiving cancer treatment or organ transplants rely on donated blood, in addition to the unexpected traumas seen at hospitals on a daily basis.

“Because we are in critical need, we are asking healthy donors to come replenish the supply,” said Jay Baumgardner, director of community relations at Blood Assurance. “If you are able to donate, we ask that you take 30 minutes out of your day to save lives in your community.”

To be eligible to donate blood, you must be at least 18 years old (16 and 17 years old with parental consent), weigh 110 pounds or more and be in good health. Donors are asked to drink plenty of fluids — avoiding caffeine and energy drinks — and eat a meal that is rich in iron prior to donating. To schedule an appointment at a donor center or blood drive near you, please visit www.bloodassurance.org, call 800-962-0628 or text ‘BAGIVE’ to 444999.

The Fort Oglethorpe Blood Assurance donation center is at 2720 Lafayette Road, next to Sear’s Shoe Store near the Battlefield Entrance. Hours for donations are Mon.-Fri. 9:30 a.m.-6:00 p.m. and Sat. 9 a.m.- 1 p.m. The local center’s phone number is (706) 861-5983.

Blood Assurance is a nonprofit, full-service regional blood center serving 51 counties and more than 76 health care facilities in Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, North Carolina and Virginia. Founded in 1972 as a joint effort of the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Medical Society, the Chattanooga Area Hospital Council and the Chattanooga Jaycees, the mission of Blood Assurance is to provide a safe and adequate supply of blood and blood components to every area patient in need.