Blood drive seeks signups for Nov. 20

Blood drive seeks signups for Nov. 20

The second of four blood drives being put on by the Whitehall National Honor Society in collaboration with the Red Cross will be taking place on Nov. 20 from 1 to 6 p.m.

The blood drive will take place at the Whitehall Elks Lodge on North Williams Street.

President of the Whitehall Central School District National Honor Society Morgan Austin is hosting the blood drives. They are going to serve as a service project and a scholarship opportunity.

“I have 30 appointments scheduled,” Austin said. “Our goal is around 40 for each drive.”

The Scholarship Blood Drive will be taking place on Nov. 20 (photo courtesy of Morgan Austin).

She shared a post on her Facebook page on Oct. 9 that outlined reasons why people should donate blood. Some were more lighthearted suggesting that you will weigh less and that no one can ask you to do heavy lifting.

Some were more serious, saying that you could be someone’s hero.

Austin said that there hasn’t been anyone who has expressed to her why they donate. But for her it comes down to one thing.

“It saves lives,” she said. “Each pint of blood we get can helps save up to three lives.”

The Red Cross has made it clear that they are not testing donors to diagnose any illness, including COVID-19. They advise you to postpone your donation if you feel unwell for any reason.

They ask that you wait until you are symptom-free for 14 days and are “feeling well and healthy.”

They are, however, performing COVID-19 antibody testing on all blood donations. They began doing this on June 15.

According to their website if your antibody test comes back positive the plasma from your blood donation could be processed into a convalescent plasma product that will help patients who are battling coronavirus.

A positive antibody test does not mean that you are infected or that you are immune. It simply means that you have been potentially exposed to the virus.

The results of the antibody test will be available by logging into your Blood Donor account on either the Blood Donor App or on the Red Cross website at www.redcrossblood.org one to two weeks after your donation.

All those who wish to participate in the blood drive on Nov. 20 will have to sign up in advance. There are no walk-ins allowed.

There will be two more opportunities to donate blood and support the Whitehall National Honor Society if you are unable to participate in this blood drive. Austin said that those will take place on Jan. 7 and May 11.

You can sign up at www.redcrossblood.org or you can email Austin at [email protected].