The Need for Summer Blood Drives

For many of us, we don’t think about donating blood in the summertime. It’s a time of year when many of us travel for vacation, or just think about kicking back for a couple precious months before cranking the energy levels back up in the fall.

That makes the need for blood drives in the summer that much more critical. Blood only has a 42-day shelf life, and with many folks on the road and in other places doing other things, supplies can run short.

We need to all do our part.

Concorde has been doing its part, this summer and in summers past. Most, if not all, of our 16 campuses in eight states have hosted blood drives where trucks or vans from local blood centers and/or blood banks have come out and solicited donations from Concorde students, faculty and staff.

It’s a key component and pillar of Concorde’s strategic vision – community based – and it’s one that always is taken very seriously.

Great health care awareness on our campuses

At the Concorde Career Institute – Jacksonville, Fla. campus, there was a great turnout for its summer blood drive.

“It’s critical to have as many people from the campuses get on the bus to see if they’re eligible to give blood, because not everyone will be able to give every time,” said Ben Robinson, Learning Resource Center Coordinator at Concorde – Jacksonville. “For some, it’s that their iron is too low, or they’re still on antibiotics. There is a host of reasons why people are deferred from giving blood, so this way, if everyone tries to give, the bus will be able to meet its monthly quota.

“It’s a numbers game for them. Jacksonville did its part, and for what was supposed to only be a two-hour drive turned into a six-plus-hour drive due to our outpouring and participation.”

Using health care awareness to sell the drive

Concorde’s Miramar, Fla. campus held a two-day blood drive the last week of July with One Blood, the local partner, which always stresses that the summer months can be most difficult in soliciting donations.

“We send out email blasts and post the event throughout the campus and on social media,” said Josh Alvarez, Director of Student Affairs at Concorde – Miramar. “We also allow the One Blood rep to make classroom visits to boost participation. Most of the education is done through One Blood. Naturally, they have great giveaways to further entice our students, like movie passes, baseball tickets, etc.

“We had great participation this go around. However, on Thursday, the CDC said they would be stopping all collection in South Florida due to mounting Zika cases in the area.”

Maintaining a steady schedule of drives

In the middle of the state, Concorde Career Institute – Orlando held its last blood drive July 21, and according to Director of Student Affairs Liane Pardo-Mansfield, the turnout was well-attended. Because of the nature of the health care professions Concorde students are involved in, they’re pretty well-versed with the importance of giving blood year round, Pardo-Mansfield said.

“Since our campus runs year round, we try to maintain a steady schedule with One Blood to make sure we have consistent blood drives on campus or at least in the business complex,” she said.

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