Press release from the American Red Cross:
Platelet Donor Jim Slater Reaches 300 Donation Milestone
(February 23, 2010) The platelet donation process can take as long as two hours to complete, which is why Jim Slater’s 300th platelet donation milestone is such an accomplishment. A Fort Wayne resident, Slater makes the trip to the American Red Cross Fort Wayne Donor Center often on a bi-weekly basis to give the gift of platelets. He says, “I give because platelets are needed and this is something I can do.”
Platelet pheresis uses a cell separator to collect only platelets and returns the other blood components to the donor. The concentrated dose of platelets collected through platelet pheresis is as many as six to 24 times the amount collected in a traditional whole blood donation. Platelet products are primarily used by cancer patients. When a patient is having extensive chemotherapy, the production of blood cells is affected and the platelet count may drop to a critical level. Plus, platelet cells can survive outside the human body for as few as five days making it necessary to continually replenish the supply available to patients.
“While I’ve never known someone personally who has needed platelets, I know that it’s important,” said Slater. He had donated traditional whole blood for many years before he gave platelet donation a try. When asked why he continues to donate platelets Slater replied, “It’s actually really relaxing to give platelets. There’s enough time for me to come in and take a nap!”
The American Red Cross is grateful to Jim Slater and the tremendous commitment he has shown to platelet donation.
There are two locations for platelet donations in Fort Wayne:
Fort Wayne Donor Center: 1212 E. California Road
Lutheran Hospital Donor Center: 7900 W. Jefferson Blvd., Suite 107
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How to Donate Platelets
Call (260) 480-8299 or 1-800-589-8127 to schedule your platelet donation appointment or visit redcrossblood.org for more information. If you are at least 18 years of age, weigh a minimum of 110 pounds and are in good general health, you may be eligible to donate platelets. All donors need to present positive identification.
About the American Red Cross
The Indiana-Ohio Blood Services Region serves northern and central Indiana and northwestern Ohio, and needs to collect about 350 units of platelets per week and 500 units of blood a day to meet patient need in more than 60 hospitals. In addition to providing blood and platelets to our community, the American Red Cross also provides relief to victims of disaster, trains millions in lifesaving skills, serves as a communication link between U.S. military members and their families, and assists victims of international disasters or conflicts.