Be the GIVING Type!

Posted on: February 13, 2015

Mayor Magee is calling on city employees and residents to strengthen our community by giving blood and helping save lives. The City of Laurel is holding a special blood drive in recognition of Black History Month. You can literally help save a life by taking a few moments to donate blood. It’s so easy to do, yet for the person who needs blood, it could literally mean the difference between life and death. You never know whose life you are saving. Although September is National Sickle Cell Awareness Month, United Blood Services is in desperate need of African American donors today! Sickle Cell Disease is an inherited disease affecting as many as 100,000 people in the United States. Many of these patients will require blood transfusions as part of their treatment and recovery. To best meet the needs of all patients, it is vitally important that the community blood supply reflect diversity of the community. Less than 10 percent of the total eligible donors give blood and only approximately one percent of the African American community donates blood. Some African Americans have rare blood types that are unique to the African American community. It is imperative that blood donors are as diverse as the patients who need their help. WE NEED EVERYONE!

The blood drive will be on Wednesday, February 18 from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm in front of City Hall. Will you please consider helping by scheduling an appointment to donate whole blood or double red blood? Our goal is to have a minimum of 24 donors signed up. Walk-ins are welcome, but all eligible donors are asked to make an appointment call Anicia Hill at 601.428.7376 or click here.

Why is it important that African- Americans give blood?

Blood that closely matches a patient’s is less likely to be rejected by the patient and can mean fewer complications after a transfusion. Genetically-similar blood is superior for people who need repeated blood transfusions, for conditions like sickle cell anemia.

Increasing African-American donations is vital because blood types O and B, the blood types of about 70 percent of African-Americans, are the blood types most in demand. Your blood donation can help African-Americans suffering from diseases such as sickle cell anemia, cancer and heart disease. Some patients with complications from severe sickle cell disease receive blood transfusions every month — up to four units at a time.