The American Red Cross has scheduled several area blood drives during September, in honor of National Sickle Cell Awareness Month, including:
Sept. 3 — Fort Jennings American Legion, 100 American Legion Drive, Fort Jennings, noon to 6 p.m.
Sept. 4 — Continental American Legion, 109 Fifth St., Continental, noon to 6 p.m.
Sept. 8 — St. John United Church of Christ, 13039 Road J, Holgate, noon to 5 p.m.
Sept. 11 — St. Marks United Methodist Church, 800 S. Main St., 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Sept. 15 — Parkview Assembly of God, 777 W. Findlay St., Carey, noon to 6 p.m.
Sickle cell disease is an inherited disease that causes red blood cells to form an abnormal crescent shape. It is estimated that sickle cell disease affects as many as 100,000 people in the U.S. Many of these patients face a lifetime of blood transfusions to help reduce the risk of stroke, damage to major organs and other complications that can arise as a result of sickle cell disease.
Since blood from donors of the same ethnic background as the recipient is less likely to cause complications, the Red Cross must maintain a diverse blood supply. This is particularly important for patients like those with sickle cell disease who may require regular blood transfusions.
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