Giving blood during the holiday season

JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) — There are many ways to give back during the holidays.

Anything from money to canned foods, but there’s also another way you can donate and save a life at the same time

“Blood is one thing that can’t be manufactured, so we rely on donations of our voluntary blood donors to keep our supply up,” Emily Austin, of MS Blood Services.

It’s free, and there are those who are in need for blood and platelets. Even during the holidays when the supply can get low.

“We have a lot of people traveling we have a lot of people out of town, and when we have those people gone, those are our donors.”

High Schools play a big role in blood donations throughout the year. With school out for the holidays, their collections are lower, but the demand can sometimes be higher around this time of year.

“Inclement weather contributes to accidents. There’s a lot of factors that can go into that and it’s a whole supply and demand thing. During the holiday the supply goes down, but the demand stays the same or increases,” she said.

Mississippi Blood Services provides 40 hospitals in the state with blood. That’s 90,000 units a year and roughly 250 units a day.

“Forty percent of the population, although they are eligible to donate, only four percent do,” Austin said.

While all types of blood are welcome, there’s currently a need for platelets, O negative, and O positive blood.

“It’s one of the easiest ways that you can give back. Everybody has an hour that they can carve our of there day to come in and save three lives,” she said.

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