Vitalant in Billings will be hosting its 11th annual Billings Biggest Blood Donation event at its 1444 Grand Ave. location from Monday, July 26 through Friday, July 30.
According to Vitalant, there is currently an urgent need for blood donations at this time. Tori Robbins, Vitalant communications manager, said Friday afternoon that the supply for blood is in a better position than what it was just months ago.
"Vitalant strives to have a four-day blood supply of each blood type on-hand. For us to use that verbiage of critical (last month), we've got two days and less than two days of certain blood types. We really protect that verbiage of critical to make sure the public knows exactly where we are with our blood supply," said Robbins.
Robbins said that now Vitalant has a three-day supply of blood on hand which puts them in the "urgent" category.
Robbins said in past years, the blood drive brought an average of 100 donations collected over the week. This time around, they are hoping to receive over 200 donations to save lives.
"The majority of the population will use blood in their lifetime, and only about 3% of the population actually gives blood. So, it's very important to get blood and to consistently give blood because people use it regularly. A lot of people think that blood usage come from tragedies and accidents, those unexpected events. That's a very small percentage of blood usage. Most of blood usage comes from people who have a medical condition or a blood transfusion is the medicine they take to survive that condition. It is very important to not only donate blood but consistently donate blood," said Robbins.
Robbins said the best way to donate during the event is to make an appointment on vitalant.org or call (877) 258-4825. New donors will need to complete a physical and questionnaire before donating.
Each donor will be entered into a drawing to win a prize from local sponsors including: Rio Sabina’s, Your Pie, AMC, Billings Best Yogurt, Hokkaido Sushi Bar and more.
For more information visit vitalant.org.