The Blood Bank of Delmarva (BBD) has declared a severe blood shortage and is asking people across the region to donate blood to help replenish blood supplies.
The UM Chester River Health Foundation (CRHF), a Kent County based affiliate of University of Maryland Shore Regional Health, is answering the call by holding a blood drive on Friday, August 25, from 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown Conference Center. Donors should use the hospital’s main entrance and request directions to the Conference Center at the front desk; the blood draws will take place in BBD’s mobile van in the parking lot. The goal is to collect a minimum of 40 pints of all types of blood, including double red cells.
“Our second goal is to collect at least 10 pints of O negative blood, said Maryann Ruehrmund, Executive Director, UM CRHF. “This type is in the highest demand because it can be given to anyone.”
According to Blood Bank of Delmarva officials, it takes at least 380 donors per day to supply the 19 local hospitals throughout the Delmarva Peninsula with the blood they need. To maintain a safe blood supply, a seven-day inventory of all blood types must be continually replenished. Right now, the available inventory is at just three days for the core four blood types, i.e. O positive, O negative, A negative and B negative.
These low levels are particularly dangerous in the summer months, when people are less likely to donate blood due to vacations.
According to national blood banking statistics, 38 percent of the American population is eligible to give blood but only 3 percent actually donates. If every eligible blood donor gave at least twice a year, there would never be a blood shortage.
To donate blood donors must:
- be between the ages of 17 and 79 years old and have a photo ID with proof of birth date.
- weigh at least 110 pounds.
- be in general good health.
- adhere to piercing and tattoo guidelines. Donors are ineligible if they have received a tattoo, body piercing, or branding within the past 12 months.
Make an appointment today by visiting donate.bbd.org/donor/schedules/drive_schedule/9168 or by calling the Delmarva Blood Bank at 1-888-825-6638. (If calling the DBB directly, donors should indicate their donation is for the Chester River Health Foundation Blood Drive.) Donors can also download the scheduling app to register from an Android or iPhone.
If you have traveled outside of the United States recently, please call the Blood Bank for more information on your eligibility to donate blood. If you had an initial positive COVID-19 test more than 10 days ago and your symptoms are resolving, you are eligible to donate.
About UM Chester River Health Foundation
The Chester River Health Foundation is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit Maryland corporation and the fiduciary responsible for soliciting, holding and disbursing charitable gifts that support excellence in patient care services exclusively at UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown. It is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors. Contributions fund the purchase of new and replacement medical equipment and technology, capital projects and scholarships for advanced health care education. The Foundation offers a complete array of philanthropy programs, from soliciting annual gifts through assistance with estate and legacy gift planning.
About University of Maryland Shore Regional Health
As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,200 employees, medical staff, board members and volunteers works with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.
About the University of Maryland Medical System
The University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS) is an academic private health system, focused on delivering compassionate, high quality care and putting discovery and innovation into practice at the bedside. Partnering with the University of Maryland School of Medicine and University of Maryland, Baltimore who educate the state’s future health care professionals, UMMS is an integrated network of care, delivering 25 percent of all hospital care in urban, suburban and rural communities across the state of Maryland. UMMS puts academic medicine within reach through primary and specialty care delivered at 11 hospitals, including the flagship University of Maryland Medical Center, the System’s anchor institution in downtown Baltimore, as well as through a network of University of Maryland Urgent Care centers and more than 150 other locations in 13 counties. For more information, visit www.umms.org.