Save 3 lives, help Red Cross collect 600 pints during on-campus blood drive

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People donate blood during the K-State blood drive in the K-State Student Union ballrooom on March 20, 2015. (File Photo by Allison Evans | The Collegian)

Kansas State Wildcats who bleed purple can bleed red and save up to three lives during the annual on-campus spring blood drive Monday through Thursday.

Blood donations can help patients close to home, such as Cassi Friday, a K-State behavioral neurobiology researcher. According to a news release from the American Red Cross, Friday’s husband and members of his family have hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia, which causes blood vessels to form irregularly. The blood vessels can cause severe bleeding in the brain, lungs, liver and gastrointestinal tract.

“Recently, my 8-month-old daughter Eleanor was also diagnosed with HHT,” Friday said in the release. “I know that some people with HHT cannot survive without regular transfusions. I’ve donated blood before, but knowing that my husband or child may need a transfusion at any time adds a sense of urgency to my donations.”

In the release, Friday said she encourages all who can to donate blood.

“I urge my fellow Wildcats to donate during this drive to help patients who need blood,” Friday said. “For me, giving blood is no longer just about helping other people who need blood. It is about helping my family, too!”

According to the release, all blood types are needed, but there is a critical need for type O-negative blood donors, as that is the universal blood type that can be transfused to patients of any blood type.

600 pints of blood

Jan Hale, external communications manager of the American Red Cross, said organizers of the K-State blood drive hope to collect 600 pints of blood.

According to the organization’s website, the average adult has about 10 pints of blood, and during a donation roughly one pint is collected.

By the end of Monday — the first day of the blood drive — 99 pints of blood had been collected.

An added bonus

All those who donate during the on-campus blood drive will receive a coupon for a free Texas Roadhouse appetizer.

There is also a K-State blood drive “selfie contest,” where donors are encouraged to post a selfie while donating blood. Those who wish to enter the contest must tag @KSUBloodDrive and @texasroadhouse to be entered to win one of 20 free Texas Roadhouse entrees.

The blood donation process

According to the organization’s website, blood donation is a four-step process: registration, medical history and mini-physical, donation and refreshments.

To donate, a blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of ID are required to check in.

The mini-physical consists of checking the donor’s temperature, blood pressure, pulse and hemoglobin. The actual donation typically takes less than 12 minutes, and the full process from step one to step four takes about an hour.

Donors must be 17, weigh at least 110 pounds and be in good health in order to donate.

Blood drive schedule

  • March 27-29 — 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Student Union Ballroom
  • March 28-30 — 1-7 p.m., Putnam Hall Lobby
  • March 30 — 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Student Union Ballroom

To make an appointment prior to donating, visit redcrossblood.org, download the Blood Donor app or call 1-800-RED-CROSS and use sponsor code kstate.

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Kaitlyn Alanis
Hi, I'm Kaitlyn Alanis, former news editor for the Collegian and a May 2017 graduate in agricultural communications and journalism. I have never tried a hamburger and I hate the taste of coffee, but I love writing stories and sharing what I learn with our readers. By writing for the Collegian, I can now not only sing along when the K-State Band plays "The Band is Hot," but I also know that most agriculture students did not grow up on a farm, how to use an AED to save someone's life and why there is a bust of MLK Jr. outside of Ahearn Field House. Thanks for reading!