Regular blood donors needed in South Georgia - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Regular blood donors needed in South Georgia

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January 2, 2004
Albany- Six people were seriously hurt Wednesday morning when this Suburban tried to pass a tractor trailer and ran off the side of the road on Georgia Highway 62 outside Leary.

The seventh passenger died. Since the holiday weekend began, more than 200 people have been hurt in car wrecks on Georgia roads.

When that happens, it takes anywhere between four and 100 pints of blood to treat a single victim.

"Hospitals need about 80 (units of type O blood a day) and we're getting about 20 (units of type O blood) a day," said Patsy McMath, the coordinator for donor recruitment for the Red Cross in Albany.

The blood shortage is so severe, all donor centers were opened on New Years Day. In Albany, only 11 people donated, but that still makes a difference.

"About 33 people were helped and would be helped with that. But in the event of an emergency, we're going to need a lot more blood than that," McMath said.

Holiday weekends are scary times for the Red Cross because there are more people on the roads and more wrecks. But more blood donors are needed every day.

"They're the only ones that can help the patients. We're only the processors and the suppliers."

It's community service that only takes 45 minutes to save the lives of many.

posted at 4:25 p.m. by brannon.stewart@walb.com