While Mass has been temporarily put on hold, St Bridget Catholic Church and the Knights of Columbus will still be holding our Blood Drive Scheduled for Sunday, April 5th in Mother Presentation Hall (The School Gym). The larger space will work to our advantage, and added safety measures are being taken to ensure everyone’s personal health and safety. Please Consider Giving – signup online to secure a specific time-slot at http//:redcrossblood.com and use your RapidPass the day of your donation for speed and accuracy when giving.
Blood Program Talking Points
As concerns about the outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019, COVID-19 rise in the U.S., we recognize that you may be concerned about the health and safety of your blood donors at your upcoming drive. We want to assure you that blood donation is a safe process, and people should not hesitate to give and receive blood.
• The top priority of the American Red Cross is safety – for our valued volunteers, employees, donors, blood program leaders and patients.
• As a reminder, the Red Cross only collects blood from individuals who are healthy and feeling well at the time of donation. Donating blood does not impact or weaken the immune system.
• At each blood drive and donation center, Red Cross employees follow thorough safety protocols including wearing gloves, routinely wiping down donor-touched areas, using sterile collection sets for every donation, and preparing the arm for donation with an aseptic scrub.
In addition to our standard procedures, you will notice the following at your local blood drive:
• Pre-Donation Donor Temperature Screening
o All donors will be asked to have their temperature taken before being permitted into the blood drive.
o If a donor has a temperature greater than 99.5°F they will be asked to come back to donate when they are healthy and will be asked to leave the drive.
• Enhanced Disinfecting
o Hand sanitizer will be available at check-in, health history and refreshment areas.
o Blood donors will be asked to use hand sanitizer prior to using tablets and laptops.
o Donor beds will be sanitized between every donor.
• Social Distancing
o Implementation of separated drive set up to allow as much distance as possible between donors.
• Staff Wellness and Protection
o All staff members will have a temperature check before presenting to work, and they’ve been asked not to come to work if they are feeling sick.
o Staff will wear gloves throughout entire blood drive, changing gloves between every donor.
• Increased Educational Materials
o Donor educational materials on COVID-19.
o Stop sign at entrances to avert ineligible donors from presenting.
• Furthermore, Red Cross employees are trained in universal precautions to help prevent the spread of any type of infection.
• These mitigation measures will help ensure blood recipient safety, as well as staff and donor safety in reducing contact with those who may potentially have this respiratory infection.
As a blood donor, you play a critical role in maintaining a sufficient blood supply, and we ask that you please continue to support our upcoming blood drive in our community to prevent any potential shortages during this public health emergency.
• The Red Cross urgently needs blood drives to run as planned and blood donors of all blood types, to give now and help prevent a blood shortage.
• Right now, many in our community are focused on preparedness, and part of that preparedness includes a readily, available blood supply for hospital patients.
• Cold and flu season has already impacted the nation’s blood supply. As the number of COVID-19 cases grow, fewer people may be eligible to help sustain the blood supply for patients. The need for blood is constant, and donors are the only source of blood for those in need of transfusions.
• Your blood drive provides opportunities for people to give and is critically needed right now to keep the blood supply stable during this challenging time.
• Your efforts to help the Red Cross deliver its lifesaving mission have never been more important.
• Working together, can we ensure patients continue to have access to blood products.
It’s important to emphasize that there are no data or evidence that this coronavirus can be transmitted by blood transfusion, and there have been no reported cases of transfusion transmission for any respiratory virus including this coronavirus worldwide.
• Nonetheless, the Red Cross has implemented new blood donation deferrals out of an abundance of caution. We are now asking that individuals postpone their donation for 28 days following:
o Travel to China and its special administrative regions, Hong Kong and Macau, as well as Iran, Italy and South Korea;
o Diagnosis of COVID-19, contact with a person who has or is suspected to have the virus.
In the days and weeks ahead, we will continue to monitor this evolving situation and keep you updated.
• As needed, we will implement further steps to ensure staff and donor safety. We are fully committed to transparency with our blood program leaders, blood donors and the American public during this time of uncertainty.
Thank you for supporting a blood drive with the Red Cross.
For more information review Red Cross talking points and FAQs on COVID-19.