Blood Assurance is offering attendees at an upcoming Chattanooga health fair the opportunity to find out if they carry the trait that can lead to a devastating blood disease.
The free sickle cell disease trait test will be available at this Saturday’s 22nd Annual Hamilton County Minority Health Fair. The event, being held inside the UTC University Center from 9 a.m.-1 p.m., will provide educational resources, health screenings, and health insurance options to those who may not have the opportunity to access them otherwise.
The CDC states that sickle cell disease affects approximately 100,000 Americans, and occurs among about one out of every 365 Black births, and one out of every 16,300 Hispanic-American births.
The testing process begins with a blood sample. Blood Assurance will collect the sample and perform the sickle cell screening test that will identify if the donor has the trait. Test results will be delivered in the mail within approximately a month.
“I am excited and proud that Blood Assurance is taking this initiative,” said Dr. Liz Culler, Blood Assurance’s chief medical officer. “Unlike patients with sickle cell disease, when someone carries the trait, they may be unaware, and are at risk of having a child with the disease. Someone knowing whether they carry the trait will help that person understand the risk when planning for a family.”
Health fair attendees interested in getting tested are not required to schedule an appointment.
For more information on the health fair, visit www.sethcminorityhealthfair.com
About Blood Assurance
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. Founded in 1972 as a joint effort of the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Medical Society, the Chattanooga Area Hospital Council and the Chattanooga Jaycees, the mission of Blood Assurance is to provide a safe and adequate supply of blood and blood components to every area patient in need.