PINEVILLE -- The Community Blood Center of the Ozarks will host a blood drive at Pineville Christian Church from 12:30 to 5:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 20, expanding past the drive's usual hours in hopes to gain more donors.
Blood donors are in dire need as the Community Blood Center of the Ozarks issued an emergency appeal for all blood types, with hospital transfusions this summer being the highest they've been since 2017.
Janice Bearbower, the McDonald County blood drive contact for Community Blood Center of the Ozarks, said the goal for the blood drive in August is to gain 35 blood donors, five more than what was donated at the drive in June. Bearbower said at the June drive 30 donors surpassed the goal she had previously set, so she's hoping the community can beat their monthly goal yet again.
Bearbower said, with covid-19 on the rise, the need for donors is continuing to grow.
"When covid is on the rise, there's a very high need for blood right now in the hospitals," Bearbower said. "You could save a life. You literally could save your neighbor's life or a family member's life by having that blood available for them."
Bearbower said one of the reasons people don't donate is due to misinformation and possible donors believing they're not eligible. Bearbower added that many people who have had cancer, have diabetes, or have high blood pressure believe they are automatically disqualified from donating, which is not always true. Bearbower encourages everyone to call and see if they can donate as guidelines for donations change frequently, and a representative from Community Blood Center of the Ozarks can help individuals learn whether they're eligible to donate blood.
On Aug. 20, refreshments will be served to all donors, as well as donors being entered into a giveaway. Individuals interested in donating can pre-register to donate online, which will make the donation process faster and more convenient upon donor arrival.