Vitalant partners with local supermarket to help increase blood supply during Thanksgiving holidays


TUPELO, Miss. (WCBI) – The region’s largest blood bank is trying to make sure it has enough supply to serve patients throughout the Thanksgiving holiday.

At any time of the day or night, hospitals could have a need for blood. When that happens, a monitor at Vitalant’s Tupelo office displays the alert, so staffers can get out the door and on the road with the precious cargo.

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But during the Thanksgiving holiday, blood donations drop by about 20%.

“People are just busy this time of year, schools are out for holidays, a lot of corporations have extended holiday vacations so it’s just a hard time for us to get donors to come in,” said Selena Nolan, donor recruitment representative for Vitalant.

Ideally, Vitalant likes to have a four day supply of blood on hand, now they say they are lucky if they have a two day supply. That’s why they’ve partnered with a local supermarket to get more donors in before Thanksgiving.

“Next week, on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, we are offering a 15 dollar voucher to Todd’s Big Star and donors can redeem that voucher for a free ham or turkey,” Nolan said.

All blood types are needed, but especially type O, because anyone can receive that blood type in emergencies. Platelet donations are also needed.

Donors must be at least 16-years-old, weigh at least 110 pounds and be in good health. For more information, you can call Vitalant’s Tupelo office at 662-842-8871