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USC Athletics partners with Red Cross to host blood drive

USC announced Friday morning that USC Athletics will partner with the Red Cross in hosting an appointment-only blood drive on Tuesday, April 14 at the Galen Center.

The entire USC press release is included here:

LOS ANGELES–USC Athletics is partnering with the American Red Cross to host a blood drive on April 14 at the Galen Center to help maintain a stable blood supply during the coronavirus outbreak.

The blood drive will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Appointments are required.  Free parking for those with confirmed donation appointments is available in Lot U on Flower Street on the southeast side of the Galen Center (accessible off Flower Street just south of the arena).

Healthy individuals are asked to schedule blood donation appointments to ensure a stable supply throughout this pandemic. Blood is perishable, cannot be stockpiled and hospital patients depend on the generosity of volunteer blood donors. The blood collected will help patients who rely on blood transfusions, including trauma and accident victims, sickle cell patients and those suffering from cancer.

“We are so grateful to USC Athletics for opening up the Galen Center’s doors for us during this time for our blood supply and supporting us in saving lives,” said Jennifer Johnson, director of faith-based and community programs for the Los Angeles Region of the American Red Cross. “As we all come to terms with the impacts of COVID-19, the Red Cross mission continues, but we need the public’s help. There is no known end date in this fight against coronavirus and the Red Cross is asking for the generosity of volunteer blood donors to help stock hospital shelves.”

Said USC athletic director Mike Bohn: “This is the most important game of the year at the Galen Center. The Red Cross really needs our help. Blood donors are heroes to hospital patients who depend on these donations to survive. I’m calling on healthy Trojans and everyone to step up and help the Red Cross ‘Fight On’ through this pandemic.”

Blood donation is essential to ensuring the health of our communities. Right now, people are following public health guidance to keep their families safe—and that includes contributing to a readily available supply of blood for hospitals.

Red Cross employees follow thorough and enhanced safety protocols, including all state, local and CDC guidelines, to help keep blood donors safe and healthy.

To maintain social distancing, appointments are required. Please schedule to donate by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767), and using sponsor code FIGHTON.

Also, volunteers are needed to help serve upwards of 50,000 free meals daily to Los Angeles Unified School District families and children at 50-plus distribution sites through the Red Cross’ partnership with the L.A. County Office of Emergency Management. Some 160 volunteers are needed each day. Click here to volunteer.


RED CROSS SAFETY PROTOCOLS AT BLOOD DRIVES

At each blood drive or donation center, Red Cross employees follow thorough safety protocols, including wearing gloves and basic face masks; wiping down donor-touched areas after every collection; using sterile collection sets for every donation; preparing the arm for donation with aseptic scrub; and conducting donor mini-physicals to ensure donors are healthy and well on day of donation.

The Red Cross also has increased vigilance during the coronavirus pandemic, including temperature checks before presenting donors enter the blood drive or donation center; social distancing between donors, including donor beds, as well as waiting and refreshment areas; providing hand sanitizer for use before entering and throughout the donation appointment; and enhanced disinfecting of equipment.

To ensure that Red Cross staff are healthy each day, standard staff health assessments, which include temperature checks, have been implemented prior to all blood drives.

Finally, only eligible and healthy people are allowed to give blood.

These mitigation measures will help ensure blood recipient safety, as well as staff and donor safety.