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Lockwood hosts Vitalant for community blood drive

Posted at 9:04 AM, Jul 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-26 15:33:18-04

LOCKWOOD - With supplies running low, Lockwood Rural Fire District No. 8 hosted Vitalant for a blood drive in their community room Saturday.

Vitalant says they currently need all types of blood, and that the blood gathered at drives such as this supply 30 locations in Montana and Wyoming.

This equates to a need of at least 150 donations each day to meet demands.

"Your red cells are going to be used for any time that there's a trauma they help bring the oxygen back to the extremities and to the heart,"Vitalant Assistant Donor Care Supervisor Maire Irwin said.

Donation numbers typically decline during summer months, and have dropped even further in light of COVID 19.

They were impressed by the turn-out of the Lockwood event, and ended up with multiple blood types and varieties of products, such as plasma and platelets.

"Your plasma is used for clotting factors, it's used for people who have had burns, It's used in mass traumas to help everything go along," Irwin said, "Most people don't realize that thirty percent of our blood products actually end up in cancer patients. In addition to the cancers and the traumas, blood disorders, for burns, for pretty much everything, there is something that blood can do."

Vitalant says donating blood is not only beneficial for others, it can help you track your own health.

"Each time, we do a mini health check-up and we check all your blood pressure, your temperature, twice, check out your hemoglobin levels, make sure all your blood levels look really good,"Irwin said.

Vitalant will host Montana's Biggest Blood Drive, Wednesday 7/29 through Sunday 8/2 at their location on the corner of Grand and 15th Street West.

"And then we also do a cholesterol check after the donation so they can get a nice little check up and see how they're doing afterwards too, and it's nice to track that long term if you donate a lot so you can kind of track your patterns, and see if anything new comes up, and it's just a nice little way to keep track of your health," Irwin said.