BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - It’s something we can give, but hope we never need.
It saves lives during emergencies, but’s also necessary for surgeries. Right now, blood supplies are critically low in Alabama.
“Normally summer is really hard because people are going on vacation, but the pandemic has only made it worse,” explains Blake Lee, the Community Development Coordiator for LifeSouth.
That’s why LifeSouth and UAB have teamed up to host a week long community blood drive at Prince of Peace Catholic Church in Hoover.
“Every donation stays here, we will keep it for the hospitals in our area,” says Lee.
Social distancing rules forced many earlier blood drives to cancel, but patients in local hospitals rely on that blood.
“If someone has a scheduled surgery, if that hospital doesn’t have that blood supply.. then they are going to have to cancel it. So we are trying to keep a steady flow of blood to our hospitals so they keep those surgeries scheduled,” says Lee.
Pandemic precautions are in place, with social distancing, extra cleanings, and masks are required.
“Before you actually walk in the door someone will check your temp, and so long as you don’t have symptoms you will come on in,” says Lee.
Over 70 people donated on Monday, the first day of the drive, which lasts until Friday.
Anyone 17 or older and in good health, can donate.
Anyone who gives blood, will get checked for the coronavirus antibodies.
Prince of Peace Catholic Church is located at 4600 Preserve Parkway in Birmingham.
The drive is open daily from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. You can make an appointment to donate by calling 888-795-2707 or visit www.lifesouth.org