Henderson County Healthy County is hosting a blood drive on Friday in support of Sickle Cell Awareness Month and the hundred of patients living with sickle cell disease treated in area medical facilities.
The blood drive is set for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the Carter BloodCare bus in the parking lot of 125 N. Prairieville St. in Athens.
Sickle cell disease patients require frequent blood transfusions, with adults requiring as many as ten to twelve pints of red blood cells at each transfusion. Ninety-five percent of sickle cell patients are African-American, and are less likely to develop antibodies to the donated blood it comes from a donor of similar racial or ethnic makeup. Greater participation in blood donation by African Americans could significantly benefit sickle cell patients in north, central and east Texas, according to a Carter BloodCare news release.
Potential blood donors should eat a nutritious meal and drink plenty of water at least an hour before giving blood. All donors must weigh at least 110 pounds, feel well on the day of donation and present a government-issued photo ID each time they give blood. Donors may volunteer beginning at age 16 with parental consent; 17-year-olds may give independently and there is no upper age limit for donating blood.
For more information on donor eligibility and to make an appointment, call 1-800-366-2834 or visit carterbloodcare.org.