This holiday season, area residents have the opportunity to give the gift of life by donating blood. The Memorial Hospital (TMH) in Craig is sponsoring the fourth and final blood drive of 1999.
Community members donated 76 units of blood at the last blood drive in September and organizers hope the drive Thursday will produce 100 units. One unit of blood is equivalent to one pint, which is the amount of blood a person will donate at one time.
The blood drive will be held from 1 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. in the board room at Moffat County School District Administration Building on Yampa Avenue in Craig.
The process itself is simple. The procedure will take less than an hour and the time it takes to actually draw the blood is less than 11 minutes. Donors fill out a questionnaire regarding medical history, have their body iron levels checked and once it is all over, donors may step into the canteen area for juice and sweets.
Donated blood goes through 14 federally-mandated tests before being given to a needy patient.
According to Jessica Maitland, communications manager at Bonfils Blood Center, donors should eat a well-balanced meal four hours before donating and drink plenty of fluids up to the time of donation.