Blood donations needed even more in winter months - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Blood donations needed even more in winter months

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Every two seconds someone in the United States needs blood.

If donating blood sounds scary, Lance Mann may change your mind. He has been giving for 10 years now.

"I started giving at a time when I wanted to donate something and I may not have had as much money at the time and I was like, 'Well, I'll go give blood,'" Mann said. "I heard the stories about the lifesaving things related to platelets of premature babies and gunshot victims and how much blood and platelets that they need at the time. I got the sob story about the premature babies and I couldn't stop giving at that point."

It takes around 30 minutes to donate blood. You can give every 56 days at one of three local Red Cross donation centers in Elizabethtown, east Louisville, or downtown Louisville. Once a month, Mann donates platelets which takes a little longer.

"If you're interested in platelets, it does take a couple hours, but you can watch a movie and have some snacks throughout," he said. "They try to make you very comfortable."

In the winter months, donations are down and there is always a need to fill.

"The average time it takes you to go through the drive-thru is five minutes," said Yulee Schafer, an account manager with the American Red Cross. "In that time, 150 people will need a blood product. If you're wondering what 150 people look like, that's three busloads of people. That's three bus loads of people that are accident victims, cancer patients, people waiting for organ transplants that need the blood to survive."

Schafer says people who need blood cannot help that they are in that position, but you can help.

"It's a free donation and you're helping somebody who can't ask for help at the time," Mann said. "It doesn't cost me a dime. It costs me a little bit of time. You're helping somebody when they're in the most dire need."

The Red Cross has an app to make it easy to schedule appointments and locate blood drives. Find more information about donating here.

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