March 4, 2013 – – The Oklahoma City Barons hockey team is partnering with Oklahoma Blood Institute (OBI) to encourage all area residents to give blood. The Barons annual blood drive is Saturday, March 9, from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., at the Cox Convention Center inside Exhibit Hall B on the west side of the building. Those who are healthy and 16 years* or older can typically donate.
Every donor age 18 or older is eligible to be one of 20 finalists to win a Ford F-150 truck to be given away at the hockey game that evening. The Barons take on the Rockford Ice Hogs at 7 p.m.
John Armitage, M.D., OBI president and CEO, says March poses challenges in meeting area hospitals’ needs. “Spring Break is exciting for those enjoying time away. But the need for blood never takes a break! There is no substitute, and patients in urgent need during March cannot wait.”
By donating blood, donors can feel good about helping to save someone else’s life. As an added bonus, each blood donor receives an OBI insulated lunch tote, free health screenings and Donor Reward Points.
If blood donors choose to forgo the lunch totes, funds designated for those will be directed to Global Blood Fund. This charity’s mission is to support struggling blood centers in underdeveloped countries. In those areas, equipment and supplies to allow people to donate often aren’t available.
Although all blood types are needed, those with O-negative type blood are especially encouraged to donate. According to the American Association of Blood Banks, those with O-negative blood type make up only nine percent of the national population. However, O-negative blood can be used by anyone in an emergency situation, regardless of type.
Providing every drop of blood needed by patients in 140 medical facilities across the state, Oklahoma Blood Institute is the ninth largest, non-profit blood center in America. For more information or to make an appointment, call 877-340-8777 or visit obi.org.