American Red Cross continue blood drives despite Florida Zika sc - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

American Red Cross continue blood drives despite Florida Zika scare

Red Cross officials go over blood donation materials at a blood drive in Gulfport. (Photo source: WLOX) Red Cross officials go over blood donation materials at a blood drive in Gulfport. (Photo source: WLOX)
GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) -

The news that Zika virus cases in south Florida are likely to be the first U.S.-based infections have suspended blood drive services in two counties there, it’s business as usual in South Mississippi.

The American Red Cross Blood Services van was filled with donors Friday afternoon at Lowe’s in Gulfport.

But it doesn’t mean officials are shying away from the Zika virus.

Blood centers in Miami and Fort Lauderdale were asked to immediately stop collecting blood until each unit of blood can be screened.

In general, officials are asking donors to self-defer or postpone blood donation for four weeks if they are at risk of Zika virus exposure.

But - bottom line – it’s important to give. Officials say each pint of blood helps to save up to three lives.

“American Red Cross is continuing to take donations no matter what happens in any other areas, no matter what things are going there's never a break in the need for blood,” said Denise Smith, donor recruitment account manager for American Red Cross Biomed Services. “Patients don’t know a break. If they need blood, they need it now.”

Long-time donor Carl Wayne Shaw of Lyman, agrees.

“People need it every day, and people in the hospitals need it and you never know when you’re going to need it.”

The American Red Cross is planning several different blood drives in the next few weeks. The big one: The Hurricane Katrina blood drive Aug. 29 and 30 and Edgewater Mall in Biloxi.

Copyright 2016 WLOX. All Rights Reserved.

  • NEWSMore>>

  • SOUTH MISSISSIPPI STRONG: Honoring hospital volunteers

    SOUTH MISSISSIPPI STRONG: Honoring hospital volunteers

    Thursday, April 19 2018 11:11 AM EDT2018-04-19 15:11:39 GMT
    Sandra and Robert go home every day usually knowing they were able to put a smile on someone's face. (Photo source: WLOX)Sandra and Robert go home every day usually knowing they were able to put a smile on someone's face. (Photo source: WLOX)

    April is National Healthcare Volunteer Week, and in Gulfport giving back is a family affair for one pair of volunteers. Sandra Morrison is dedicated to making sure patients and visitors at Memorial Hospital's gift shop can find whatever they're looking for.

    More >>

    April is National Healthcare Volunteer Week, and in Gulfport giving back is a family affair for one pair of volunteers. Sandra Morrison is dedicated to making sure patients and visitors at Memorial Hospital's gift shop can find whatever they're looking for.

    More >>
  • Free class teaches women to protect themselves

    Free class teaches women to protect themselves

    Thursday, April 19 2018 10:45 AM EDT2018-04-19 14:45:01 GMT
    A free self-defense class for women is being taught Thursday at East Central Public Library. (Source: Facebook)A free self-defense class for women is being taught Thursday at East Central Public Library. (Source: Facebook)

    A free class happening Thursday in Jackson County is hoping to help those women turn the tables on their attackers. 

    More >>

    A free class happening Thursday in Jackson County is hoping to help those women turn the tables on their attackers. 

    More >>
  • Man accused of stealing vehicle from Biloxi funeral home

    Man accused of stealing vehicle from Biloxi funeral home

    Thursday, April 19 2018 9:09 AM EDT2018-04-19 13:09:55 GMT
    Robert Daniel O'Neal (Source: Biloxi Police Dept.)Robert Daniel O'Neal (Source: Biloxi Police Dept.)
    Robert Daniel O'Neal (Source: Biloxi Police Dept.)Robert Daniel O'Neal (Source: Biloxi Police Dept.)

    A Biloxi man is facing charges after police say he asked to use the phone of a funeral home and then stole a vehicle parked outside. 

    More >>

    A Biloxi man is facing charges after police say he asked to use the phone of a funeral home and then stole a vehicle parked outside. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly