Community Blood Center seeks new donors amid supply challenges, aging givers

The severe flu season is hurting blood supplies at donation centers around the country.

This is National Blood Donation Awareness, and News Center 7's Letitia Perry looks at what low supplies mean for the Community Blood Center in Dayton and why it hopes for more new donors than ever this year.

The tornadoes and the mass shooting helped to make 2019 a trying year at the CBC.

“These two events … challenges the blood supply for different ways … the unity of our community,” CBC’s Mark Pompilio said.

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In fact, in a five-day period, 1,700 donors came to help meet the need, continuing the “Dayton Strong” movement and the “Donor Strong” movement.

The CBC serves hospitals in 16 counties — Butler, Champaign, Clark, Clinton, Darke, Greene, Logan, Miami, Montgomery, Shelby, Warren and Wayne, Indiana, counties — and will expand this year.

That’s one of the reasons the center is on a new mission to get more donors. Another is that many of their regular donors are growing older.

“Maybe those donors are getting on in age … replace that generation that is ‘aging out.’” Pompilio said.

There are a number of daily reasons outside of last year’s major events that cause supplies to run low.

“When you’re challenged by winter weather, flu season, students being out of school,” those are all reasons donors may not be able to come in.

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The entire donation process takes about an hour or less, and just one pint of blood can save up to three lives.

Donors must be at least 16 with a parent’s consent, or otherwise 17 or older.

Donors also should be in good general health, and cannot have the flu or any symptoms.

Finally, bring a photo identification that lists a birth date.

The Community Blood Center is at 349 S. Main St. in downtown Dayton, but there are a number of community blood drives, listed on the center's website.

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