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Blood Donations Lull in Summer Months

CROTON-ON-HUDSON— Summer vacation for high school students has an unintended consequence that perhaps only a blood bank could forecast—the lull in blood donors. Despite the constant need for blood, a major source of blood donor recruitment, high schools, take a vacation from June to August.

“People think of summer as a time to take off from everything,” said Aimee Steinke, Blood Bank Supervisor at the Hudson Valley Hospital Center , “During the fall and winter you have a lot more people come out for donations. High schools are a big area of recruitment, so during the summer when everybody’s on vacation they don’t have the student involvement like they do during the school year.”

Blood is used in all kind of medical procedures, from routine surgeries to accidents, and in aging care. “The whole process takes under an hour,” said Steinke, about donating blood. Donors will be asked to give a brief personal history to determine eligibility, and the actual drawing of blood take only about 15 minutes. “When you think about how much good comes from it it’s a miniscule amount of time,” said Steinke, who brought her two children and husband to the Hudson Valley Hospital Center’s last blood drive.

The Croton Free Library will have a blood drive on Thursday, July 21, in the Ottinger Room from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Blood donors should be healthy, be at least 17 years old (or 16 years old with guardian permission) and weigh at least 110 pounds.

http://www.redcrossblood.org/donating-blood/eligibility-requirements

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