(Watertown) Watertown Regional Medical Center’s Chief Nursing Officer is calling on the community to make a blood donation, the need for which has been magnified during the pandemic. Patricia Gedemer says every two seconds someone in the United States needs blood, but only about 10-percent of those who are eligible to give actually make a blood donation each year.
She says as our community continues to fight COVID-19 and Watertown Regional Medical Center cares for patients suffering with the disease, the need for donated blood is greater than ever. In addition to blood donations needed to prevent blood shortages and ensure a sufficient supply for standard surgical and patient care, the hospital says certain donations may be able to help COVID-19 patients recover more easily. Gedemer says evidence shows that convalescent plasma from the blood donations of people who have recovered from COVID can be used in some hospitalized patients to help lessen the severity or shorten the length of their illness.
She says when a recovered individual donates, the liquid plasma from COVID-19 antibodies are separated from the blood cells and are used for treatment. Gedemer calls on those who have had the virus and recovered, to consider donating. She says it is a gift that could potentially save lives and even if a person did not have COVID, the blood donation can help prevent a blood shortage. To learn more visit www.redcrossblood.org.