On Saturday, June 7, 2014, The San Pedro Red Cross, Washington University and Belize Blood bank teamed up to hold a blood drive. A total 19 pints were collected thanks to everyone who spread the word or came out and donated. Added to the previous reserve, this gives Ambergris Caye a total of 91 pints in our island blood supply.
Donating blood is relatively quick, taking about 20 minutes and it could help save a life. Belize Blood Bank follows procedures to ensure that safety for both the donor and the recipient. All blood gets tested by the Blood bank for the following things: Malaria, Hepatitis B and C, Chagas, HIV and syphilis.
Any blood collected in San Pedro is not sold or transferred to other communities inside or outside the country of Belize. The blood collected in San Pedro is stored at the Belize Blood Bank specifically for the Ambergris Caye Community. This past weekend, a local resident contacted the San Pedro Red Cross Chairman Eiden Salazar, stating there was need for O- blood. Following specific procedures put in place by the Blood Bank, Eiden was happy to accommodate their request. If you are an island resident or visitor in need of blood, simply contact Eiden Salazar at [email protected] or Anthony Anderson, [email protected], and they will be happy to assist.
The San Pedro Red Cross Branch would like to thank the following businesses and individuals for making quarterly blood drives a success, and for their on-going support in creating a safe community: Tropic Air, Air Strip Taxi Association, Island Supermarket, Crossfit CSF and Freddie Gonzalez. A special thank you goes to Washington University Medical School for all their help. In addition to hosing the blood drive, they provided cutlery and plates, Facebook posted during the event, and provided fantastic volunteers.
The next blood drive will be September 6, 2014; location to be announced. If you would like to be on the San Pedro Red Cross Blood Drive reminder notification list please contact: Shirlee Arnould [email protected] or Laurie Norton [email protected] with Regular Blood Donor as the email title. If you are an island resident with a rare blood type, we would also like to hear from you for our emergency contact list. You can send information to either email listed above.
World Blood Donors Day 2014
Every year, on June 14, Belize joins the global community in celebrating World Blood Donor’s day by honoring its voluntary blood donors. The event raises awareness of the need for safe blood and blood products and to thank voluntary blood donors for their life-saving gifts of blood. This year, the theme is "Safe Blood for Saving Mothers".
This theme is relevant for Belize since pregnancy and childbirth services have received much priority by the Ministry of Health. Severe bleeding during delivery and after childbirth is a major cause of mortality, morbidity and long-term disability. The goal of the global campaign is to increase awareness about why timely access to safe blood and blood products is essential as part of a comprehensive approach to prevent maternal deaths.
On June 10, 2014, Chief Executive Officers and Senior Managers of the private sector voluntarily donated blood in support of the theme. They also expressed that it is an example to their staff and reflected on the importance of being a voluntary blood donor. The Ministry of Health and the Belize Voluntary Blood Donors Association encourage young adults to visit or call the National Blood Bank in Belize City, telephone: 224- 5010, and become Voluntary Blood Donors. It is gratifying to know that the blood you donate will save lives.
On June 14th, the Voluntary Blood Donors of Belize will be acknowledged for their constant effort in contributing to have a safe stock of blood allowing the Blood Bank to respond to the demand, not only for pregnant women, but for all emergency and non-emergency cases.