Santee Cooper, Berkeley County and Moncks Corner hold successful blood drive during COVID crisis
MONCKS CORNER, S.C. – Responding to an urgent need for blood donations, Santee Cooper, Berkeley County and the Town of Moncks Corner teamed up earlier this week and sponsored a blood drive to benefit the American Red Cross Palmetto SC Region.
Donors, primarily employees and retirees of the three host organizations, gave 59 units of blood, enough to save up to 177 lives.
An escalating number of COVID-19 cases has led to cancellation of many blood drives, creating a critical need. “Right now, we are asking citizens to care for themselves by following guidelines from federal, state and local leaders, but it’s also important to step up for those most vulnerable among us - those in hospitals and treatment facilities in need of blood,” said Berkeley County Supervisor Johnny Cribb. “As a resource, blood is becoming increasingly important in patient recovery efforts. Berkeley County thanks those who have taken the time to give blood and encourages others to consider donating.”
Santee Cooper President and CEO Mark Bonsall said “Santee Cooper is pleased we were able to join forces with Berkeley and Moncks Corner and hold a blood drive to help the Red Cross in this time of crisis. I applaud the generous spirit of all of the donors, including our employees and retirees, who came out to give the gift of life.”
Moncks Corner Mayor Michael Lockliear added, “We are thankful to Santee Cooper for their willingness to host this blood drive. They have always been great partners for our community, and we are proud to have joined with them and Berkeley County to help meet this need.”
The Red Cross has adopted stringent protocols to ensure the health and safety of the donors and staff. In addition to standard safety measures, Red Cross staff checked temperatures, set up stations in the Santee Cooper auditorium to allow for social distancing, and wore face masks to protect the donors. Hand sanitizer also was provided to use throughout the process.
Kate Lilly, account manager with the Red Cross Palmetto SC Region, appreciated the turnout as well. “On behalf of all the patients in need, thank you from the bottom of my heart for making this happen,” Lilly said. “I am so thankful for each donor, and seeing how resilient and ready they are to answer the call in time of need is inspiring.”
Blood and platelets are always in demand. Healthy individuals who are interested in donating can use the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org or call 800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to locate a blood drive near them.