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Blood need at a ‘critical’ level in West Georgia

Residents throughout the east Alabama-west Georgia region are encouraged to make a New Year’s resolution to save lives by donating blood with Life-South.

“There’s a critical need right now for all blood types,” LifeSouth Blood Centers spokesperson Rhonda Kendrick said. “Donations tend to slack off in November and December because people are busy with the holiday season. If everyone who can donate blood donates at least once a year, there would be no blood shortages. Make 2020 your year to save lives by donating blood.”

From now through Jan. 6, anyone donating to LifeSouth will receive a $10 gift card.

“It’s our way of thanking you for donating to help meet this critical need,” Kendrick said.

On Saturday, the LifeSouth bloodmobile will be at Wal-Mart in LaGrange from 11 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. and at the Loyd Presbyterian Church south of LaGrange from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. EST Sunday.

According to Melinda Joseph, district community development coordinator for LifeSouth, there’s a variety of reasons the blood supply tends to dwindle this time of year.

“There’s a two-fold problem,” she said. “While the need for blood in hospitals is increasing, donations tend to decrease. This is due to busy schedules, travel and poor weather. Blood donations are needed every day to make sure hospitals have what they need to help patients.”

LifeSouth is the primary provider of blood to such hospitals as EAMC-Lanier, the East Alabama Medical Center, Jackson Hospital, Flowers Hospital, Southeast Medical Center, Baptist Medical Center South, Baptist Medical Center East along with other hospitals in the region.

Donors must be at least 17 years of age (or 16 with parental permission), weigh a minimum of 110 pounds and be in good health.

A photo ID is required. Blood donations can be made at either a donor center or aboard the bloodmobile. To find a location near you, visit lifesouth.org or call (888) 795-2707.