Darlington County Free Medical Clinic hosts Blood Drive
The Darlington County Free Medical Clinic hosted a blood drive on Friday and donors got more than a donut and a good feeling for giving the gift of life — each donor received a free test to see if their blood contains antibodies for COVID-19.
Red Cross collection specialist Tricia Mulholland said that to observe social distancing guidelines, donors signed in, passed a brief exam (including a temperature check and quick physical), gave medical histories, and made their donations all while remaining 6 feet away from other donors.
While donations are needed year-round, the pandemic has put a damper on some major blood drive efforts and supplies are currently low.
Red blood cells have a shelf life of only 42 days and platelets just 5 days, so they must be constantly replenished by volunteer donors.
Those with Type O blood, considered universal donors, are encouraged to give blood if at all possible.
The antibody test is conducted on collected blood and results are confidential.
To learn more about how you can help, visit redcrossblood.org and schedule your donation.
— SAMANTHA LYLES