Dishman School of Nursing partners to host summer blood drive

The JoAnne Gay Dishman School of Nursing is partnering with LifeShare Blood Center to host a summer blood drive from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Monday, July 18 in the Mamie McFaddin Ward building room 103.

This is the first event of its kind to be hosted by the school of nursing. According to nursing instructor Shannon Marsh, LifeShare Blood Center reached out to the program due to a critical blood shortage.

“There is almost always a blood shortage,” Marsh said. “COVID-19 made that shortage even worse because donations decreased, but blood is always needed.”

With 10 years of experience as an ICU nurse, Marsh said there were many times the hospital had to wait for blood to be delivered from out of state due to a local shortage.

“While we waited for the blood to arrive, the patients would remain in critical condition,” she said, citing her reason for donating blood — her 8-year-old son. “When my son was a newborn, he needed emergency surgery on his abdomen — something we were not anticipating. He needed two blood transfusions after surgery, which would not have been possible without blood donors. If we didn’t have blood donors, he may not be with me today!”

Anyone can donate blood after filling out a questionnaire to help determine if potential donors are candidates for donation.

Donors can only give every eight weeks. Some medications may prevent someone from donating, Marsh added, “but I always encourage people just to come out and see if they are a candidate. If they discover they are ineligible for donation, they still get a free T-shirt for trying. They could save a life!”

To schedule an appointment to donate blood, visit the LifeShare website. Walk-ins are also welcome.