Red Cross urging blood donations in honor of National Sickle Cell Awareness Month

Aug 21, 2014

(Courtesy of the American Red Cross.)

The American Red Cross encourages eligible donors to help ensure a stable and diverse blood supply by giving blood in honor of National Sickle Cell Awareness Month this September.

Sickle cell disease is an inherited disease that causes red blood cells to form an abnormal crescent shape. It is estimated that sickle cell disease affects as many as 100,000 people in the U.S. Many of these patients face a lifetime of blood transfusions to help reduce the risk of stroke, damage to major organs and other complications that can arise as a result of sickle cell disease.

Since blood from donors of the same ethnic background as the recipient is less likely to cause complications, the Red Cross must maintain a diverse blood supply. This is particularly important for patients like those with sickle cell disease who may require regular blood transfusions.

To help increase donations during the month of September, those who come out to donate blood or platelets throughout the month will receive a coupon by email for a free haircut at participating Sport Clips locations.

For more information or to make an appointment to donate blood, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Upcoming blood donation opportunities:

Clay County

Sept. 15 from 1 - 6 p.m. at First United Methodist Church, 188 N. 3rd Avenue in Piggott

Craighead County

Sept. 14 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Church of Christ, 101 Craftsbury Lane in Bono

Sept. 7 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Southwest Church of Christ, 1601 James St. in Jonesboro

Sept. 11 from 12 - 5 p.m. at Riceland Foods, 216 N Gee St. in Jonesboro

Greene County

Sept. 12 from 1 - 6 p.m. at Walmart, 2802 W. Kings Hwy. in Paragould

Independence County

Sept. 12 from 2 - 6 p.m. at Walmart, 3150 Harrison in Batesville

Sept. 13 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Walmart, 3150 Harrison in Batesville

Sept. 15 from 1 - 5 p.m. at First United Methodist Church Batesville, 615 E Main St. in Batesville

Jackson County

Sept. 11 from 2 - 6 p.m. at Walmart, 2500 Malcolm Hwy. 67 N. in Newport

Sept. 5 from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Tuckerman High School, 300 N. Dowell in Tuckerman

Lawrence County

Sept. 10 from 12 - 5 p.m. at Williams Baptist College, 22 McClellan Drive in College City

How to donate blood

Simply call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit redcrossblood.org<http://www.redcrossblood.org/> to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental consent in some states), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.