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Lifestyles: Blood donation

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The American Red Cross held a blood drive today at Saint Peter's Hospital. In this week's Lifestyles Report, Beartooth NBC's Kristin Price talks to a donor about the importance of giving blood.

Maryellen Crockford says she gives blood around 5 times a year. She says as a healthcare worker, it's something small she can do to make an impact. 

"I think it's the right thing to do, it's simple and I think you can help a lot of people.” says Crockford.

Red Cross Donor Recruitment Representative Amber Hoofman says there is a huge need for blood in Montana. 

"Obviously, there's no synthetic for blood and here in the state of Montana, there's someone that requires blood every 27 minutes,” Hoofman says. 
    
Hoofman says donating blood is easy. She says the entire process takes about an hour, including registration and materials.
    
According to Hoofman, “You go back into a health screen where you'll be asked a series of questions. Following that is the actual donation process and we say on average that can take anywhere from 4 to about 10 minutes.”
    
She says the blood collected at the drives helps more than 30 hospitals, with blood collected in Helena going to local centers first. Saint Peter's Hospital representatives say a single unit of blood helps more than one person because it's divided into blood cellsplasma and platelets. Although there are some requirements almost anyone can donate blood. 

"If you have the time and you can do it, I would do it,” says Crockford. 
And they even provide treats for the donors when they're done. The American Red Cross donation center on North Montana Avenue is open for donations on Tuesdays and Fridays. 

For more information on the center visit the Helena Donor Center website.

Story by Kristin Price, Beartooth NBC.
Copyright ©2012 Beartooth Communications Company. All Rights Reserved. 

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American Red Cross, blood donation, Maryellen Crockford, Amber Hoofman

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