That’s what platelet donors hear most every time they help save a life through the American Red Cross. And that’s because these tiny gold-colored cells in blood are constantly needed by hospital patients with life-threatening illness or injury.
Platelets are the clotting components in blood that control bleeding. Patients with serious health conditions like leukemia, cancer and aplastic anemia can’t produce enough platelets of their own and often need platelets to survive or to improve their quality of life. Platelets are also essential for many surgeries, trauma care and during the course of chemotherapy.
Platelets for patient care come from volunteer donors who make and keep appointments through special Red Cross collection sites. Platelet donations can take from 90 minutes to two hours and involve the use of a cell-separating machine that removes platelets and a small amount of plasma from whole blood, then returns remaining blood components to the donor. Donated platelets only last for five days, and are always in high demand. Donors can give platelets up to 24 times in a 12-month period. Donors can also give blood after waiting a certain number of days between donations and meeting eligibility requirements.
For information on donating platelets, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-589-8127.
UPCOMING AMERICAN RED CROSS BLOOD DRIVES IN YUR AREA INCLUDE:
- Wednesday, Nov. 7, from 1 p.m. until 6 p.m. at Argos Elementary School in the gymnasium, located at 600 Yearick Ave. in Argos. Please go to redcrossblood.org and enter sponsor code “argelem” to schedule your blood donation appointment for this blood drive sponsored by the Pint Size heroes of Argos Elementary School.
- Sunday, Nov. 11, from 12:30 p.m. until 5:30 p.m. at Culver Academies in the Fleet Gymnasium, located at 1300 Academy Road in Culver.
About donating and eligibility
To schedule an appointment to donate please call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit redcrossblood.org for more information. Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental permission in Indiana and Ohio), meet weight and height requirements (110 pounds or more, depending on their height) and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. Please bring your Red Cross blood donor card or other form of positive ID when you come to donate. Platelet donors should also be aspirin-free for 48 hours.