INDIANAPOLIS — The American Red Cross hosts its World Blood Donor Day blood drive Friday afternoon at the Indiana State Fairgrounds.
Donor Recruitment Manager Lance White says there’s a constant need for donors. Since blood is perishable they can’t keep it on the shelf for long, so they are always asking for donations to keep the supply from getting low.
White says events like this are all the more important to getting more donors.
“What people don’t realize, there’s only like a little less than 40% of the population that can donate at any given time and only about 10% of that does donate. So you’ve got less than 4% of the population that provides all the blood to the hospitals,” said White.
“So when we have event like this, it’s so important to get anybody who donates, anybody who’s ever thought about donating — we want you guys to come out because the number one reason we hear when we survey people on why they don’t donate is that they haven’t been asked. So here’s me asking. Please come donate.”
For the event, appointments are recommended so you won’t have to wait long but they are not required.
Those who donate will not only get a t-shirt but also Sun King Brewery is giving $5 coupons to donors.
“Because of the way we split up the blood once we get that blood back to our lab, after it’s tested it gets split up into three different products. So not only do you get those freebies, but you’re going to be saving as many as three lives with your donation.”
Lance also says the FDA adjusted some of their deferrals that prevented people from donating in the past.
Some people were excluded from donations for fear of Mad Cow disease because they lived in certain European countries in the 80s and 90s but that list has been reduced.
And there’s also been a change in the deferral time for people who couldn’t give for fear of risk of HIV. That time has been reduced from a year to three months. Find more information here.