FEMA Supports Sickle Cell Donations

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PLEDGE TO GIVE BLOOD

***Editor’s Note***
To participate in the FEMA Blood Donation to Support Sickle Cell Disease (SCD):
1. Complete this Pledge Form
2. Locate your nearest Red Cross Donation Center at https://www.redcrossblood.org/give.html/find-drive to schedule a blood donation appointment.

Thank you so much for helping to provide lifesaving support to patients with Sickle Cell Disease. Your donation is greatly appreciated! ♥♥♥

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Donating blood for Sickle Cell Disease is a safe and simple way to help save lives in your community. All over the country, surgery patients, cancer patients, burn victims, and people with chronic diseases rely on lifesaving blood and blood products.

*Did you Know?
○ More than 100,000 individuals in the U.S. suffer from sickle cell disease – an enduring and often invisible condition.
○ The disease disproportionately affects individuals of African descent, many of whom rely on routine blood transfusions as an essential treatment to prevent life-threatening complications.
○ A single patient with sickle cell disease can require thousands of blood transfusions throughout their lifetime.
○ The disease causes red blood cells to be hard and crescent-shaped instead of soft and round, making it difficult for blood to flow smoothly and carry oxygen throughout the body.
○ Blood transfusions help relieve pain during a crisis and can prevent other complications by increasing the number of healthy red blood cells in the body.

*Sickle Cell Disease vs. Sickle Cell Trait
○ People with one sickle gene and one normal gene have sickle cell trait.
○ Sickle cell trait is inherited, and many individuals are not aware that they carry this trait.
○ Sickle cell trait is not sickle cell disease, and in most cases, individuals with sickle cell trait do not experience any symptoms of the disease.
○ Approximately 1 in 13 babies who are Black or African American are born with sickle cell trait.
○ It is essential to know your trait status.

One blood donation can save up to three lives.

There is no substitute for human blood. Approximately 36,000 units of blood are used every day and every 2 seconds someone in the United States needs a blood transfusion.

*** Donating blood is a volunteer opportunity that helps your community and doesn’t take very long.
As a federal employee, you are permitted up to four hours of administrative leave for blood donation, with your supervisor’s permission. This includes the time you spend at the donation site, travel to and from the site, and recovering after you donate. ***

*During Your Donation
When you make an appointment to donate blood, use the following tips to prepare:
○ Bring a photo ID and a list of prescription and over-the-counter medicines that you take.
○ Wear a short-sleeve shirt or a shirt with sleeves that you can roll up to your elbows.
○ Relax, listen to music, or meditate.

*Learn More
There is always a need for blood donations. Contact your local blood donation center or the Armed Services Blood Program to learn more and make an appointment to donate blood today. https://www.redcrossblood.org/give.html/find-drive