Rowland targets 7 homes in decline

The American Red Cross said it was facing a blood crisis, calling the situation the worst shortage in more than a decade. “Dangerously low blood supply levels pose a worrying risk to patient care and force doctors to make tough decisions about who gets blood transfusions and who will have to wait until more products become available,” said officials in a nationwide press release.

ACR officials have said blood and platelet donation are essential to help prevent further delays in life-saving medical treatment, and donors of all blood groups – especially type O – are urged to take see you now to donate in the coming weeks.

In fact, in recent weeks the Red Cross has reported that it has less than a day’s supply of critical blood groups and has had to limit distributions of blood products to hospitals. Sometimes up to a quarter of hospitals’ blood needs go unmet, according to the report.

Chadbourn resident Arthur Graham attended the Red Cross blood drive held at the Baptist Church in Godwin Heights on Tuesday. Graham told the Robesonian that he donates blood regularly.

“If I can help someone, I want to help,” Graham said.

As of Tuesday afternoon, there had been 17 people to donate blood during the drive and 29 people were due to do so by the end of the day, according to Red Cross volunteers. Some people even donated two units of blood on the way.

Blood from the Carolinas is being sent to the places that need it, said Robin Mason, a phlebotomist attending the blood drive.

“Usually it stays local,” she said.

And because the life-saving fluid has an expiration date, regular donors are needed, she said.

There are about one to two blood drives held in Robeson County each month on average, said James Oxendine, a senior volunteer with the local American Red Cross, which serves Lumberton and surrounding areas. During the pandemic, the local chapter averaged about three to four trips per month.

Another blood drive is scheduled for January 20 from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church located at 1002 N. Chestnut St. in Lumberton. The University of North Carolina at Pembroke will also be hosting a blood drive that day from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the campus located at 1 University Drive in Pembroke.

“If you can donate blood, go out and save a life,” said Nakeisha Bowens, a phlebotomist attending the blood drive on Tuesday.

Pandemic challenges

The Red Cross continues to face relentless challenges due to COVID-19, including an overall drop of around 10% in the number of people donating blood as well as cancellations of ongoing blood drives and limitations on blood donation. staff. In addition, the pandemic has contributed to a 62% drop in blood drives in schools and colleges.

“Winter weather conditions across the country and the recent increase in COVID-19 cases are worsening the already dire blood supply situation,” said Dr Baia Lasky, medical director of the Red Cross. “Please, if you are eligible, make an appointment to donate blood or platelets in the days and weeks to come to ensure that no patient has to wait for intensive care. “

Over the next month, about 59% of donation appointments remain vacant in the American Red Cross region of eastern North Carolina.

Residents are asked to make an appointment to donate blood or platelets as soon as possible using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting, or calling 1-800-RED CROSS ( 1-800-733-2767).

Red Cross and NFL

The Red Cross and the NFL are teaming up to urge individuals to donate blood or platelets and help fight the national blood shortage. Those who donate blood, platelets or plasma in January will automatically be entered for a chance to win a Super Bowl LVI getaway in Los Angeles. As an additional thank you from the Red Cross, those who donate will also be automatically entered to win a home theater set and a $ 500 electronic gift card. Conditions apply; visit for more information.

How donations help

Kala Breder knows full well how disastrous the lack of blood can be. In July 2020, a few hours after the birth of his son by emergency Caesarean section, Breder developed a complication and began to bleed uncontrollably. As medics fought to save his life, they depleted the hospital’s entire blood supply as well as all available blood within a 45 mile radius. Eventually, she was airlifted to another hospital because there was not enough blood locally.

Breder credits the 58 different blood products she received for helping save her life. “Without one of them, I probably wouldn’t be here,” she said. “I needed every last unit.”

Volunteers wanted

In addition to blood donors, the Red Cross also needs the help of volunteers to support essential blood drives across the country. Blood drive volunteers play an important role in welcoming, registering, answering questions and providing information to blood donors throughout the donation process. Blood transport specialists – another volunteer opportunity – provide a vital link between donors and recipients of blood by delivering blood to hospitals in communities across the country. To volunteer to support Red Cross blood drives, visit

Safety of blood drives

Every Red Cross blood drive and donation center follows the highest standards for safety and infection control, and extra precautions – including face masks for donors and staff, regardless of their condition. immunization status – have been implemented to help protect the health of everyone present. Donors are requested to make an appointment before arriving at the drive.

Save time when donating

Donors can also save up to 15 minutes collecting blood by completing a RapidPass®. With RapidPass®, donors complete the pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of donation, from a mobile device or computer. To complete a RapidPass®, follow the instructions at or use the Red Cross Blood Donor app.

To donate blood, people must bring a blood donor card or driver’s license or two other pieces of identification required at check-in. People aged 17 in most states (16 with parental consent where state law allows), weigh at least 110 pounds, and are generally in good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors aged 18 and under must also meet certain height and weight requirements.

Health information for donors

In an era when health information has never been more important, the Red Cross is examining all donations of blood, platelets and plasma from African American donors self-identified for the sickle cell trait. This additional screening will provide black donors with additional insight into their health and help the Red Cross identify compatible blood groups more quickly to help sickle cell patients who need trait-negative blood. Blood transfusion is an essential treatment for people with sickle cell disease, and donations of blood from people of the same race, ethnicity and blood group have a unique ability to help patients fight sickle cell disease.

Donors can expect to receive sickle cell trait screening results, if applicable, within one to two weeks through the Red Cross blood donor app and online donor portal at

About the American Red Cross

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and comforts victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; distributes international humanitarian aid; and supports veterans, military personnel and their families. The Red Cross is a nonprofit organization that depends on the volunteers and generosity of the American public to carry out its mission. For more information, please visit or, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.