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South Texas Blood & Tissue Center bloodmobile

Frequent blood-donor program comes to UTSA

By Cindy Brockwell
Development Assistant, Office of Student Affairs

(Sept. 14, 2006)--The South Texas Blood & Tissue Center invites UTSA community members to become frequent blood donors -- a Rowdy Life Saver -- to give back to your community and to help yourself at the same time. Frequent donors are those who donate six times a year. Below, see the fall schedule of blood drives at the UTSA 1604 Campus. -

Sadly, while 60 percent of the U.S. population is eligible to donate blood, only five percent do. In keeping with the UTSA community's tradition of volunteering and giving back to the community, UTSA participation continues to grow.

Each pint of blood can save three lives. The South Texas Blood & Tissue Center must draw 500 pints each day to provide for its 43 South Texas counties and 100 hospitals. To reach that goal, they average 15 to 20 blood drives every day.

Blood donations on UTSA campuses have increased steadily each year since 2003, when 268 pints were collected, to 2006 when more than 1,200 pints have been drawn... and we still have more than three months left in the year with more opportunities to participate. In all, 4,736 pints of blood have been collected from UTSA students, faculty and staff since 2003.

The number of blood drive sponsors also has increased, and the list includes many community-minded offices and organizations including Student Health Services, Pre-Med Society, Air Force ROTC, Army ROTC, Chaparral Village and University Oaks, West Campus Facilities Services, Campus Recreation and many others.

Sponsoring organizations receive recognition when their club or office name is promoted at the donor sign-up tables.

In addition to the pleasure derived from giving back to the community, frequent donors are covered for a year by the blood benefit plan. Should you need blood, the program will pay up to $1,000 for blood processing fees. Your children under 17 years of age also are covered under the plan.

Donors also receive special thank-you gifts each time they donate. This year, the gift is a free haircut from Sport Clips, in addition to pizza and a duffel bag or pair of flip-flops.

Most people who are in good health, at least 17 years old and weigh at least 110 pounds may donate blood every 56 days. Photo identification is required. Some medication or medical conditions may keep a person from donating.

Blood donation involves four steps: medical history, quick physical, donation and snacks. The blood collection takes approximately 10-20 minutes. The entire process, from sign-in to the time you leave, takes 45 minutes to one hour.

For more information, visit the South Texas Blood & Tissue Center Web site or call Melissa Escobedo at (210) 275-3935. Internships are available at the center for marketing and communications majors.

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Fall 2006 blood drives at UTSA 1604 Campus

Sept. 18-19 -- University Center Laurel Room (2.01.28)
Oct. 24-26 -- University Center Laurel Room (2.01.28)
Nov. 20-21 -- University Center Mesquite Room (2.01.24) and Pecan Room (2.01.26)
Dec. 4-5 -- University Center Mesquite and Pecan rooms

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Did you know?

  • Bypass surgery uses an average of six pints of red blood cells and six pints of platelets.
  • The average liver transplant patient needs 40 pints of red blood cells, 30 pints of platelets, 20 bags of cryoprecipitate and 25 pints of fresh frozen plasma.
  • The average bone marrow transplant requires 120 pints of platelets and approximately 20 pints of red blood cells.
  • Severe burn victims may need 20 pints of platelets during their treatment.
  • There is no substitute for human blood.
  • If all blood donors gave at least twice a year, it would greatly strengthen the nation's blood supply.
  • Cancer, transplant, trauma and open-heart surgery patients require platelet transfusions to survive.

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