GREENVILLE, S.C.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--As communities along the Florida and Georgia coast prepare for Hurricane Dorian, The Blood Connection (TBC) urges all eligible blood donors to do their part in preparing too. Even though Dorian hasn’t made landfall yet, TBC has already been asked to send blood products to Florida in advance of the storm. Donors who give now will ensure a steady blood supply locally and for communities in Dorian’s path. While TBC’s priority is to supply its local hospitals first, it also has a responsibility to help other communities in times of crisis.
“Part of what we do at TBC is answering the call of other communities. A hurricane can disrupt the blood supply for days,” said Delisa English, TBC President and CEO. “It’s imperative that donors give now in case rough weather heads our way too. We need to be proactive, not reactive.”
The start of hurricane season is a good reminder that communities must have a plan, especially those along the coast. The hurricane threat is especially high in the Charleston area, TBC’s newest territory. Prioritizing regular blood donation now ensures a blood supply that can withstand the unpredictable. Even though the weather changes, the need for life-saving blood does not.
“Blood donations are just as important as first responders in some cases. They both save lives. During hurricane season especially, we never know what the impact will be. Things can change very quickly,” said English. “There’s a possibility those impacted by the hurricane will need our help after the storm too, and we will continue to send whatever is needed.”
Because of the daily crucial need for blood, TBC must operate 365 days a year. To assure that happens, TBC is a member of two national organizations that focus on disaster preparedness: American Association of Blood Banks (AABB) and Blood Centers of America (BCA). TBC will continue sending needed blood products to Florida in coordination with BCA’s national resource sharing program. TBC will also follow any disaster response guidelines coming from AABB during a state of emergency. Management and staff have been reviewing those guidelines as Dorian approaches.
Donors can visit any TBC center in the Upstate of South Carolina, as well as Asheville and Raleigh in North Carolina: 435 Woodruff Road, Greenville, SC; 341 Old Abbeville Highway, Greenwood, SC; 5116 Calhoun Memorial Hwy, Easley, SC; 1308 Sandifer Boulevard, Seneca, SC; 270 North Grove Medical Park Drive, Spartanburg, SC; 225 Airport Rd, Arden, NC; 5925 Glenwood Ave, Raleigh, NC. Centers are open Monday through Friday 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on the weekends 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Donors can also find a mobile blood drive near them at thebloodconnection.org. TBC is grateful for the many donors who will respond to this need.
On average, TBC needs more than 600 blood donations per day to maintain an uninterrupted blood supply. One donation can save up to three lives. Blood donors must be healthy, weigh at least 110 pounds, and be 17 years old or 16 with written parental consent. All blood types are needed.
About The Blood Connection
The Blood Connection has been committed to saving lives since 1962. Founded in Greenville, South Carolina, TBC is an independently managed, not-for-profit, community blood center that provides blood products to more than 70 hospitals within Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina.
Recognized by the U.S. Congress for its dedication to disaster preparedness and the community, TBC works diligently to collect blood from volunteer donors to meet the ever-increasing demand. By keeping collections local, TBC serves hundreds of thousands of patients a year in its communities. TBC is licensed and regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. For more information, visit thebloodconnection.org.