By SCOTT ELNES
CENTRAL OREGON DAILY
There’s good news and bad news for the Red Cross these days.
“I just heard in the Pacific Northwest we’ve had 2,000 less units collected in the last week because of cancelations,” said Dana Shibley, team supervisor at Bend’s Red Cross location. “We usually do a lot of blood drives at high schools and colleges, and we get a lot of blood at those drives and those are complete canceled, so we’re trying to find new sites, but a lot of those donations are happening in our centers”.
But thankfully Bendites are stepping up in a big way.
“We’re really thankful that people are coming. We are fully booked for many days and we are getting a lot of new donors and a lot of young donors, which is really exciting,” Shibley said. “Basically anyone who is healthy and well, we are encouraging to come. “
Because while there are new needs for blood, a lot of the old needs remain the same.
“A lot of our donors are getting blood because they are in cancer treatment that are having low blood counts from chemotherapy and they need blood almost every other week and then all the things that usually happen to people that they need blood for injuries and things like that,” Shibley said.
So what do you need to know to donate?
“Having an appointment is helpful to avoid crowds. Go to www.redcross.org and look at Bend. Anywhere within 10 miles you’ll see where our drives are. We are still going out in the community right now and our fixed site is open Monday through Friday.”
And keep in mind, there is a new normal for donation too.
“You’re going be blocked through the first door to get your temperature taken, then your gonna have hand sanitizer then come in and register,” Shibley said. “We’re going to be interacting with you the entire time with gloves on and we’ll be handing you things that have been completely cleaned and rooms that have been completely cleaned before you get there. Once you’re off the bed and the next person coming on everything is cleaned thoroughly and dried so it’s slowing us down a little bit but we’re being extra thorough with our cleaning methods around here.”