SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — With the blood supply low and need growing more and more every day, the American Red Cross is counting on one of it’s single largest blood drives out of the year to help out.
NewsChannel 9 spoke with two people who are putting this drive together next week, where you give the gift of life and get some things too.
“This year has definitely been, I’ll use the word unprecedented,” said Kristin Crandall, a senior account manager with the American Red Cross.
Between March and May, 85 percent of all blood drives were canceled. The only reason the Red Cross survived the blood shortage was the cancellation of elective surgeries.
“Of course after May we turned all that back on so now we’re back in the same position where we need a lot of blood and the drives haven’t really picked up yet,” said Al Stirpe, 127th District State Assemblyman.
Stirpe is teaming up again with the Red Cross for his 14th annual summer blood drive. The last few years, they collected over 180 units of blood at each drive.
This year’s goal is 200 units, which could save the lives of 600 people in the hospital.
“For those undergoing chemotherapy or radiation they’re often receiving lots of platelet transfusions, but I also always like to bring light to those with rare blood disorders,” said Crandall. “To maintain a healthy, sufficient life they need ongoing transfusions.”
Before you even get in the blood drive, you will have to have your temperature checked and put on hand sanitizer.
“I think what’s most important for people to recognize is that we sanitize in between every single donor as they come in,” said Crandall.
If you’ve been looking at front line workers throughout this whole pandemic and how they’ve done some heroic things to keep everybody healthy, this is your opportunity to be a hero too.Assemblyman Al Stirpe
The blood drive will also be doing free antibody testing, which may tell you if you’ve had a past COVID-19 infection.
They will also have a raffle to give away gifts like a Stickley end table, air pods and gift cards.
The drive will take place on Tuesday, July 21 from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. at the Driver’s Village.