By Stephanie Hernandez NCCC-FEMA Corps/External Affairs
|FEMA employees donate blood at the Forest Hills Joint Field Office, Queens, N.Y., April 10. Photo by Andre R. Aragon/FEMA|
FEMA employees gave more than federal aid to New Yorkers, recently, they gave their blood, too. A one-day Red Cross Blood Drive at the Queens, N.Y., Joint Field Office resulted in 35 units of fresh blood that could save up to one hundred lives.
The Bethpage, Long Island Mobile Blood Unit collected the blood from FEMA employees who volunteered at a crucial time, as the mobile was forced to cancel many of its scheduled blood drives following Hurricane Sandy, and was only recently able to return to the area.
Blood shortages happen when an area has less than three days of supplies on hand, said a Red Cross representative. In the U.S. alone, someone requires blood every two seconds. During a disaster, shortages develop quicker than normal. The demand for blood stays the same before, during and after a disaster.
The Bethpage Mobile Unit plans to collect blood at the JFO two more times, April 25 and May 5.
For those who would like to support the Red Cross but cannot give blood, a Red Cross employee suggests volunteering time or sponsoring a blood drive.
To donate blood at a location near you, please visit: redcrossblood.org/donating-blood.
FIVE FACTS ABOUT BLOOD
- Over 44,000 donations are used daily in the U.S.
- Less than 38 percent of the U.S. population is eligible to give blood
- Platelets must be used within five days of donation
- Only 7 percent of the U.S. has O-negative blood, which can be received by all other blood types
- A single car accident survivor may need up to 100 units of blood
Source: American Red Cross RedCrossblood.org.