Delta Phi Epsilon hosts blood drive

Anisa Jibrell – News Writer

One hour and one pint of blood is all it takes to save three lives, according to collections team supervisor Pat Patonelli from the American Red Cross.

Delta Phi Epsilon hosted a blood drive on Sept. 16, from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the Adanti Student Center ballroom to benefit the American Red Cross.

Delta Phi Epsilon member and community service coordinator, Nicole Nathan, said giving blood is the simplest and easiest way to give back to the community.

“It gives us an opportunity to volunteer and help other people on campus get involved as well,” said Nathan. “Sometimes when you go to college you can’t really find time to donate. It gives an easy access to a blood drive.”

The sorority hosts two, two-day long blood drives per semester, though the days for this blood drive are not back-to-back, according to Nathan. The second portion of this blood drive will be held at the same location and time on Sept. 23.

Others like Pamela Nicholas, Delta Phi Epsilon member are unable to give blood, but look for other ways to still make an impact.

“I’ve tried to give blood but my iron’s always been to low to give blood. So I always love to volunteer at a blood drive and make a difference in a different way,” said Nicholas.

In the state of Connecticut, a person must be 17 years of age, in reasonably good health and be able to pass a mini physical and questionnaire to qualify to be a  blood donor, said Patonelli.

“Eat well the night before,” said Patonelli, as he removed a needle from a donor’s arm, “and really hydrate so that your veins distend as best as possible.”

Nathan suggests taking iron supplements a couple of days beforehand, and minimizing caffeine intake.

The blood donated is broken up into three groups — red blood cells, platelets, and plasma—that have three different forms of retention, said Patonelli.     

According to Patonelli, red blood cells tend to go to emergency rooms and operation rooms in hospitals and last up to 42 days in refrigeration. Platelets tend to go to cancer patients, or patients who lose their ability to stop bleeding during procedures such as, chemotherapy. Platelets are good for up to five days at room temperature. Plasma is the third product that basically goes anywhere and last up to a year in the freezer.

As someone who was previously afraid of needles, Nathan reassures new donors that the process is quick and easy.

“They’ll keep you in the bed a bit longer if it’s your first time just to make sure that you don’t get dizzy or anything,” said Nathan.

First time blood donor Alexis Martin, sophomore pre-nursing major said her sister would be holding her hand through the process.

“I don’t like needles, so I’m freaking out on the inside,” said Martin.

According to it website, The American Red Cross helps Connecticut residents prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies with services provided by small paid staff and a corps of more than 3,000 volunteers.

The American Red Cross of Connecticut aids more than 3.5 million Connecticut residents in 168 towns in Hartford, Fairfield, Litchfield, Middlesex, New Haven, New London, Tolland and Windham counties, and Fishers Island, N.Y.

Clubs are highly encouraged to register for an American Red Cross blood drive directly through their website.

Photo Credit: Anisa Jibrell – News Writer


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