Are you my type?

By Chief Sam DiGiovanna

Every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood which must always be immediately available on the shelf. Blood has a truly short shelf-life span and must be constantly replenished year-round to ensure availability for all patients.

But whether its National Blood Donation month or not there is always a need. So, blood banks are doing their part to get the word out while focusing on their own efforts, including a newly implemented initiative saving COVID-10 patients’ lives country wide.

National Blood Donor Month has been observed in January since 1970 with the goal of increasing blood and platelet donations during winter – one of the most difficult times of year to collect enough blood products to meet patient needs. During the winter months, inclement weather often results in cancelled blood drives, and seasonal illnesses like the flu may cause some donors to become temporarily unable to donate.

It may be 2021, but we are still in a pandemic and blood supplies are still low. To celebrate National Blood Donor Month, the American Red Cross is partnering with the NFL to help promote donations -- entering donors for a chance to win a trip to the 2022 Super Bowl.

Blood donation appointments can be made by downloading the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or to receive more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients.

Do not let mosquitoes get your blood first. To give blood you need neither extra strength nor extra food, and you will save a life. If you are a blood donor, you are a hero to someone, somewhere, who received your gracious gift of life.

“You are somebody’s type, please donate!”

Sam DiGiovanna is a 35-year fire service veteran. He started with the Los Angeles County Fire Department, served as Fire Chief at the Monrovia Fire Department and currently serves as Chief at the Verdugo Fire Academy in Glendale. He also is a consultant for www.Cordico.com