Mercy Flight Central nurses and paramedics call it “trauma season” because they see a spike in serious injuries each year when the weather warms up.
Mercy Flight Central announced it will host American Red Cross Blood drive Tuesday, May 7, from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. at its Mercy Flight Central hangar on Brickyard Road in Canandaigua. Donors are encouraged to bring a friend, as a way to double their donation.
The blood drive is timed as Mercy Flight prepares for “trauma season” and May as Trauma Awareness Month. Mercy Flight Central nurses and paramedics call it “trauma season” because they see a spike in serious injuries each year when the weather warms up. So the critical care helicopter ambulance service hosts an annual Red Cross blood drive in early May, this year on May 7.
“Our flight crews routinely see a threefold increase in patients with traumatic injuries during the height of summer compared to the winter months,” stated Jeff Bartkoski, president of Mercy Flight Central and a former Navy pilot. “That’s why we hope to see every chair and table filled at this year’s blood drive because many of our patients will need blood to survive their ordeal, added Bartkoski. “We do one part to save lives-providing fast transport with highly skilled staff- but we need community members to step up too by rolling up their sleeves and giving their blood. There’s no substitute for the real thing.”
According to the National Trauma Institute, trauma accounts for approximately 41 million emergency department visits and 2.3 million hospital admissions in the U.S. annually.
“A single car accident victim can need as many as 100 units of blood,” stated Patty Corvaia, communications manager, New York-Penn Red Cross Blood Services. “In trauma situations, when there’s no time to check a patient’s blood type, emergency personnel reach for type O negative red blood cells and type AB plasma.”
During Trauma Awareness Month in May, the American Red Cross urges eligible donors to help ensure lifesaving blood is available for patients with traumatic injuries and other serious medical needs by donating blood or platelets.
O negative red blood cells and AB plasma can be transfused into any patient, regardless of blood type, making donors with these universal blood types an important part of the Red Cross trauma team. Less than 7 percent of the population has type O negative blood, and only about 4 percent of the population has type AB blood.
Support trauma victims and get a $5 Amazon.com Gift Card via email when you donate between May 1-June 2019. Donation appointments can be scheduled by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
How to help
Eligible donors can learn more, find a donation opportunity and schedule an appointment by using the free Blood Donor App, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.