MILWAUKEE - Versiti Blood Center of Wisconsin will be hosting the 20th annual Season of Giving Blood Drive on Monday, Dec. 28 and Tuesday, Dec. 29.
It takes place Monday, Dec. 28 from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Tuesday, Dec. 29 from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Milwaukee County Zoo Peck Welcome Center.
Donations of all blood types are needed, but there is a critical need for O negative donors who carry the universal blood type given to patients in emergency situations.
"The need for blood never ends, and it is a critical need," says Dr. Dan Waxman, vice president of transfusion medicine and senior medical officer at Versiti. "Now more than ever, Versiti Blood Centers needs people to step forward for their community and save a life by donating blood. In a year like 2020, when so much feels out of our control, the selfless act of blood donation lets you make a life-saving gift for free."
During the drive, Versiti will also be collecting COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma (CCP) from eligible donors who’ve been pre-qualified. COVID Convalescent Plasma is a blood-related therapy used by hospitals to treat the most severely affected patients. The donated plasma contains antibodies, which can help seriously ill patients fight the infection.
Due to COVID-19, safety precautions will be in place, including social distancing and mandatory masks. COVID-19 antibody tests are being performed on all donations as part of Versiti’s standard testing. The test will inform the donor if they have antibodies reflective of a prior COVID-19 infection.
To schedule an appointment, call 1-877-BE-A-HERO (1-877-232-4376) or visit https://www.versiti.org/seasonofgiving. Appointments are preferred, but walk-in donors are also welcome. The entire process takes about an hour.
Donors should bring a photo ID that includes the birth date.