As Hurricane Idalia moves across Florida’s Big Bend, Blood Assurance is preparing to assist.
The blood bank is maximizing its collection efforts, and asking the public to donate whole blood and platelets in case any of its community blood centers in the storm’s path are in need.
“Blood Assurance has depended on other blood centers when our communities have suffered a natural disaster,” said Blood Assurance CEO, J.B. Gaskins. “We have a moral obligation to help when we can.”
If Blood Assurance is asked to help, it will impact the supply for the nonprofit’s own service area.
“That’s why it’s so vital to donate now,” according to Gaskins. “We need to make sure our shelves are fully stocked with blood units.”
Individuals who donate through the end of the month will receive a vintage Blood Assurance item, such as a t-shirt, coffee mug, or tote bag, while supplies last.
To be eligible to donate, 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 and eat a hearty meal prior to donating.
Donors can visit www.bloodassurance.org/schedule, call 800-962-0628, or text BAGIVE to 999777, to schedule an appointment. Walk-ins are also accepted.
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.