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Blood Assurance is urging all eligible donors to make an appointment to donate blood this week to prepare for traumas, natural disasters and regularly scheduled transfusions to help patients in need. 

The need for blood never stops but over the last few months, donor turnout has been low. In order to meet the needs of local patients, the number of donors seen each day must increase. 

“We are asking all donors who can give blood to schedule an appointment right now,” Dr. Elizabeth Culler, medical director at Blood Assurance, said in a news release. “Blood donors are needed every day and we always say that today’s donors save tomorrow’s patients. If a natural disaster or massive trauma were to occur, we would not be prepared to help local patients. We need donors to commit to give this week.”

There are several locations in Williamson County where blood can be donated.

All donors will receive an adventure-themed T-shirt to remind them to never stop the adventure of saving lives, per a release. Donors 18 years and older will be entered to win a side-by-side if they donate twice in 2021. 

Blood Assurance says it is continuing to take extra precautions at this time to ensure the safety of donors and staff. It says staff and donors are required to wear masks and staff are frequently disinfecting all items and surfaces used by donors. They are also accepting donors by appointment only and these appointments are being spaced apart to ensure adequate distance.

Blood donation is essential to the infrastructure of health care, the organization says, and the only way to ensure patients have the blood they need is for people to donate. Blood cannot be manufactured and all blood used in community hospitals is from volunteer donors.

To be eligible to donate blood, you must be at least 17 years old (16 years old with parental consent), weigh 110 pounds or more and be in good health. Donors are asked to drink plenty of fluids — avoiding caffeine — and eat a meal that is rich in iron prior to donating. 

Click here to schedule an appointment or find a center or drive near you, call 800-962-0628 or text ‘BAGIVE’ to 999777. 

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