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As the nation grips with near record high gas prices this holiday season, Blood Assurance is offering drivers a chance to see some relief at the pump.

During the Thanksgiving Gift Card Giveaway scheduled for Friday, the organization will present $50 Shell gift cards to randomly selected individuals who donate that day at any of its Middle Tennessee brick-and-mortar facilities. A single donor will be awarded each hour that particular facility is open. The Cool Springs location is a participating donor, as are centers in Columbia, Tullahoma, Clarksville and Cookeville.

Additionally, from Tuesday through Saturday this week, those who give blood at any mobile blood drive throughout the Blood Assurance service area will be entered to win a $50 Shell gift card. 

On Saturday, all individuals who donate at a facility or mobile blood drive will be entered to win a $500 Shell gift card.

The promotion comes as Blood Assurance anticipates another significant reduction in the already depleted blood supply. 

“Typically, there is a 20 percent drop in blood collections around the holidays,” Dr. Ted Kieffer, Blood Assurance’s medical director, said in a press release. “Since we haven’t recovered from the COVID-19 supply shortage, this drop can be potentially devastating to our local hospitals and their patients. If you are available to donate, it’s imperative to do so.”

Blood donors are urged to visit bloodassurance.org/schedule to view a list of all upcoming blood drives and to schedule an appointment. Donors can also call 800-962-0628, or text BAGIVE to 999777.

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.

Blood Assurance is a nonprofit, full-service regional blood center serving more than 70 health care facilities in Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, Kentucky and North Carolina.