As COVID-19 Impact Diminishes, Blood Donor Numbers On The Rise

Red Cross staffer Jolene Haavey checks on Ron Reisner of Glenwood during his whole blood donation Monday at Trinity Lutheran Church.

Mark Buckingham donates his O-Negative blood at Monday’s drive in Glenwood.

Monday’s American Red Cross blood drive attracted about 45 donors to the Trinity Lutheran Church social hall in Glenwood, including Kathy Reisner.

The COVID-19 pandemic had a negative impact on blood drives and donations in Mills County but numbers are gradually returning to normal.

The American Red Cross typically hosts blood drives throughout the year at various locations in Mills and Fremont counties, including Trinity Lutheran Church, Glenwood Community High School, East Mills Middle and High School in Malvern and Fremont-Mills School in Tabor.

On Monday, Red Cross staff collected nearly 45 pints of whole blood at Trinity Lutheran Church.

“I think people are more comfortable donating again,” blood drive coordinator Tim Goddard said Monday in Glenwood.
Goddard, who coordinates blood drives throughout southwest Iowa for the Red Cross, said donations decreased during the pandemic for understandable reasons.

“The need went up and donations went down,’ he said.

Many of the blood donors at Monday’s drive, held in the Trinity Lutheran Church social hall, are longtime blood donors, including Mark Buckingham, who was giving “double reds” of his O-Negative type blood.  It’s a blood type that’s in high demand.

“They can give my blood to anyone, no matter their blood type” Buckingham said. “It’s valuable in emergency rooms when they need blood because it can go to anyone.”

Buckingham said giving blood is an easy and gratifying way to help others in need.

The next blood donation drive at Trinity Lutheran Church will be held in August but local donors who would like to give blood before then at other drives in the region or in the Omaha area can make an appointment on the American Red Cross website or by calling 1-800-733-2767.


The Opinion-Tribune

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