Our 11th Annual Parrot Head Party is scheduled for May 21st at MEDIC’s Downtown Donor Center on Ailor Avenue. We’re teaming up with the Smoky Mountain Parrot Head Club to put on a great event. All donors will be treated to a cheeseburger lunch, free Rita’s Italian Ice, a coupon for a free Chick-fil-A sandwich, a coupon for a free Texas Roadhouse appetizer, and a limited-edition Parrot Head t-shirt. All donors will also be entered to win two tickets to see Garth Brooks in concert on Saturday, May 30th and a gift basket from Margaritaville in Pigeon Forge. This is one of our most exciting and popular events of the year. We hope you’ll join us!
For years you’ve probably heard about the importance of O- blood. It is, after all, the universal donor. Hospitals love it because they can virtually transfuse a unit of O- blood into anyone regardless of their blood type. Even donors with O+ and A+ blood types have been in high demand. Those blood types account for more than 70% of the country’s population, but rarely do you hear about the need for those with other blood types — especially AB blood. The problem with AB blood is that it can only be used by those with AB blood, and only 6% of people have either AB+ or AB- blood. While their blood type is needed and their donations are appreciated, the collection of that blood type is often prioritized behind other blood types more often used for transfusions. But things are changing at MEDIC; AB donors are in high demand. Why? Blood is made up of red cells, white cells, plasma and platelets. Although AB red cells can only go to those with AB blood, AB plasma can go to anyone. That’s right — AB blood is the universal plasma donor. Plasma is a commonly used blood product used to help trauma patients, burn victims, and cancer patients. MEDIC now has the technology needed for donors to give only plasma. AB donors are being encouraged to participate. The donation process is exactly the same. The only difference is that instead of
MEDIC Regional Blood Center is providing Second Harvest Food Bank with 14,460 meals thanks to the generosity of its blood donors. Typically, all MEDIC blood donors receive a t-shirt for donating blood, but during the month of February, donors had the option of receiving a shirt or donating the cost of the shirt to Second Harvest Food Bank. This year, a higher percentage of blood donors than ever before opted to help those suffering from hunger in East Tennessee. “We’ve had to cancel dozens of drives this year because of the snow and ice,” said MEDIC CEO Jim Decker. “I was worried that at the end of the month we wouldn’t have collected that much for Second Harvest, but our donors really came through. We’ve never seen a show of support quite like this before.” MEDIC has partnered with Second Harvest for several years. This year, for the first time, Second Harvest hosted a blood drive to help raise awareness of the partnership. Beginning in March, MEDIC donors will have a similar opportunity to help two organizations at once. MEDIC is partnering with the American Heart Association to help raise money for research, education, and improving patient care.
Have you been stuck inside with the kids all week? Here’s a great opportunity to get your family out of the house and to feel good about yourself. With blood donations down 90% this week because of the weather, Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies is generously helping provide a FREE ticket to anyone who donates blood with MEDIC on Friday. The ticket can be used anytime in the next year for admission to Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies in Gatlinburg. Here’s a list of our Friday blood drives: TVA Credit Union in Morristown – 3955 W. Andrew Johnson Highway, 9am-4pm Lowe’s Cedar Bluff – 210 North Peters Road, 10am-6pm Walmart in Oneida – 19740 Alberta Street, 11am-6pm Food City in Oak Ridge – 1199 Oak Ridge Turnpike, 11am-6pm Food City in Sevierville – 741 Dolly Parton Parkway, Noon-7pm Texas Roadhouse Alcoa – 334 Fountain View Circle,