Blood and Money

The Red Cross needs your blood.

The Southeastern Region of the Red Cross says it has been at critically low supply levels since last week. Instead of the five to seven days’ supply Red Cross officials would like to have, levels have fallen below the one-day supply level, said spokesman Troy Russell.

“During the summer, we lose upwards of 20 percent of our regular donors,” Russell said. “A lot of people go out of town, and there is lack of awareness, or interest, on the part of eligible donors.”

John McCain needs your money.

13 comments

  1. I Am Jacks Post says:

    Sounds like the Southeastern Region of the Red Cross, while lacking vital resources, is still in better shape than McCain’s South Carolina operation.

    His state director just got replaced (and is now an unpaid “consultant,” and his state political king pin, Richard Quinn is also now unpaid.

    So he’s got about $2 million on hand, but that’s offset by his existing debt. So he’s broke.

    JRM2016, this is the part where you remind me McCain will still win SC because all your friends that worked on the Bush campaign are also working for McCain.

  2. Nicki says:

    WTF, dude? Isn’t there some sort of rule against using any post to go off on your pet subject?

    In a related note, I’m sorry to hear about the Red Cross’s plight, but I have been permanently barred for life and so will be unable to help them with it. (Mad cow and whatnot. Mooooooo!) I also would feel more sympathy if they were willing to make more people eligible to give based on the improvements in recent years in testing. You know, like men who’ve had sex with other men, even once, since 1977.

  3. Bill Simon says:

    Nicki,

    You’d have “more sympathy” for the Red Cross if they would allow donors to give blood if the donors have engaged in risky sexual activities?

    Gosh, that’s mighty kind/white/black/Latino/whatever of you, but the people who need blood due to a traffic accident would rather NOT have to walk-out of the hospital healed except for a nagging blood-borne disease injected into them.

  4. Mike-El says:

    I’m confused. Is John McCain about to run out of blood?

    rugby, I’ll be shocked if he makes to to the first water station.

  5. Decaturguy says:

    Bill,

    You should know better than that. I could test negative for any disease they can test for, over and over and over again, but I still cannot give blood.

    You don’t see anything wrong with that?

  6. Nicki says:

    The issue for me, Bill, is that someday I might be able to give blood again if the red cross and whatnot can figure out that my blood is safe, or at least reasonably safe, which I assume they’ll do once they understand vCJD better. I understand that, because I have potentially been exposed to a disease which is potentially blood borne. And the knowledge of how to handle the disease is limited.

    HIV, by contrast, is no longer unknown, and we know what spreads it. Hint: not homosexuality, per se. But instead of screening for risky behaviors, the Red Cross chooses to determine that gay men can NEVER donate. Ever. Oh, and any woman who’s ever had sex with another man. Also ever.

    So…even if I could donate these days, I’m not sure that I would. What with Red Cross being so confident in their supply that they can turn down eligible donors.

  7. HarmanW says:

    Hi Peach Pundit,
    This is Wendy from the American Red Cross. I ran across your entry and comments this morning. I’d like to clarify that the FDA makes the blood donation rules, not the Red Cross. The American Red Cross, along with the AABB and ABC have recommended that the FDA revisit its lifetime deferral for men who have had sex with other men.

    From the official statement:
    “AABB, ABC and ARC believe that the current lifetime deferral for men who have had sex with other men is medically and scientifically unwarranted and recommend that deferral criteria be modified and made comparable with criteria for other groups at increased risk for sexual transmission of transfusion-transmitted infections. Presenting blood donors judged to be at risk of exposure via heterosexual routes are deferred for one year while men who have had sex with another man even once since 1977 are permanently deferred.”

  8. I expected Wendy’s comment to include: “and I’m really getting a kick out of these replies.”

    Seriously, though, I did not know the FDA was in charge of the blood donation rules. (I don’t know if that’s more reassuring or less reassuring.)

    And Nicki, if it’s not too personal, how does somebody get exposed to vCJD? I thought “regular” CJD was literally a million to one -is the variant more or less likely cause infection?

  9. Nicki says:

    Well, according to the FDA (Thanks, Wendy) one goes to certain places at the proper time. In other words, I probably haven’t been exposed — but I have been in places where exposure was possible at the correct time and for now that keeps me from donating. vCJD is the reason behind restricting those who spent more than 3 cumulative months in the UK in the 80s and 90s, which I did.

  10. Nicki says:

    CJD is a rare and idiopathic disease. vCJD is the disease that appears to result from consuming BSE-infected bovine brain matter. They’re actually very different, but the symptoms are similar. Neurological degeneration followed by death.

    Worldwide, there have been (as of March 2005) a total of 166 cases of vCJD with 93 percent of those occurring in the UK. The only diagnosed case of vCJD in the U.S. was a woman who had lived most of her life in the UK.

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