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FORT LEONARD WOOD, Mo. -- That's right, if your New Year's resolution has already failed, don't worry about it. Redeem yourself by giving blood this month. In 15 minutes and you can save the lives of up to three people!

According to the Red Cross, every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood. However, due to difficulties and low temperatures this time of year, there is a decline in blood donations throughout blood banks across the country when it's needed the most.

Hospitals and emergency treatment facilities require approximately more than 44,000 units of blood daily. An average adult body has roughly 10 pints of blood and about 1 pint is usually drawn during a transfusion.

Red cells, plasma, platelets and cryoprecipitate are four types of transfusable sources that can be obtained from a donation. Usually, two or three of these are produced from a pint of blood. That single donation can help save the lives of up to three people!

We all need blood to survive and most people have blood to spare. Regardless of your blood type; A, B, or O, there is still not enough to go around. By donating, you can help ensure blood is on the shelf when needed.

Our hospital budget Staff members apply their wisdom and knowledge in stocking up and planning ahead when it comes to making their deposits at blood banks too.

"As a donor and a recipient, you thank God each and every day that anyone can help," said Velma Johnson, budget analyst and frequent blood donor at General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital.

"It's a good thing to give, especially when it's free," said Noelle Keller, another budget analyst here at General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital.

And there are other benefits to giving blood.

"Sure, you get free stuff for donating, but it's not about what you carry in your hands, it's what you carry in your heart," said Spc. Jamey Duck, medical lab technician General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital. "For those scared of needles, that moment of discomfort could mean the difference between life and death for someone."

Giving blood is serious business and hits close to home for many.

"Remember about your time when your child needs blood, I bet you won't be afraid of needles," said Johnson.

In recognition of National Blood Donor Month, you can raise awareness and education on the importance of saving lives by donating this life-sustaining fluid. You can be someone's hero. Remember, your one 15-minute commitment this month could help save more than one life with just one donation.

For more information about where you can donate, keep your eyes open this month. There will be several announcements about where you can give blood around Post. You can also visit the American Red Cross for more information by going to www.redcross.org/donating-blood.

For those whose New Year's resolutions survive past January, don't let your persistent perspiration stop you from the saving of others' expiration! You can save lives year round'--even if your New Year's resolutions don't expire!

(Editor's note: Spc. Johnthan Matar is retired infantryman formerly assigned as a journalist to the General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital Public Affairs Office)

Page last updated Sun February 2nd, 2014 at 16:09