The meeting of the Cleveland Blood Assurance Advisory Board on Tuesday discussed the various strategies for garnering more donations throughout the holidays, as well as various issues that arise which prevent companies from sending their employees for donations.
Seven people attended the meeting, with the collections vs. usage of blood outlined displaying positive results for Cleveland yet again.
“We used to do more donations, but the bus was going out every day back then,” said Jay Baumgardner, Blood Assurance community relations and business development.
Despite the fewer bus trips in the community, Cleveland still has collected the most units in the area with 5,121 and used only 1,812 red cells and 165 platelets. Not using as much that’s taken in allows the remainder to be used in neighboring areas which require more blood than Cleveland does. These numbers are only accounting for donations given at Tennova Cleveland and do not include donations at Blood Assurance’s location.
Baumgardner outlined the high standards Blood Assurance expects of its workers, and explained how the company strives to provide excellent customer service to its donors.
The bloodmobile requires a minimum of three workers to operate, and donor recruiter Pam Hanson said in a perfect world, they’d have four certified workers on the vehicle. Unfortunately for all Blood Assurances, if there aren’t enough workers, the vehicle can’t go around collecting donations as often as needed.
“We’ve got a good presence in Murphy and we are trying to get a community drive started in Benton,” Hanson added.
Recently, the Athens location closed and was taken over by Medic, which also accepts blood donations.
The board is planning for a community drive to take place on Dec. 31, and is currently seeking various companies whose employees can donate that day. Numerous local companies have pledged support throughout the years, but holidays are some of the most difficult times to get blood donations. Ironically, it’s these times that blood is often needed more due to high travel rates.
Hanson said a common issue she’s heard from companies is that they cannot afford to lose even one person from the production line despite supporting Blood Assurance. Hanson explained how she has discovered how to remedy this by contacting multiple departments at companies, because if one cannot donate, another might be able to.
If you work for a company that’d be willing to supply donors for blood, contact Blood Assurance at 423-476-3201. It is located at 201 Keith St. in Cleveland.
The Blood Assurance Advisory Board will meet again on Nov. 20.
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