A Central Blood Bank staff member prepares a Penn State New Kensington student for a blood donation using the apheresis method.
Image: Bill Woodard
Community blood drive set for March 29 at New Kensington campus
March 14, 2017
NEW KENSINGTON, Pa. — Penn State New Kensington encourages blood donations from the campus, alumni and local community at the semiannual blood drive, set for 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday, March 29, in the Art Gallery.
The Central Blood Bank will collect, store and deliver the blood. Donors of all blood types from the campus and the local community are encouraged to help increase the blood supply in the Alle-Kiski Valley. Donors need to bring a photo ID, eat a good meal, and avoid caffeine prior to donating.
“New Kensington’s blood drive lets us come together as a united campus and community to save some lives,” said Stella Milburn, the campus nurse.
Donors have a choice of donating using either the whole blood or apheresis methods. Both methods draw approximately a pint of fluid from the donors. The whole blood method is the typical method where the blood is drawn manually, collected in a pint bag, and stored unprocessed. It is later separated into red blood cells and plasma. The apheresis method draws blood from the donor, separates it using a centrifuge or a filter, stores the desired part — platelets in this case — and returns the rest to the donor. This process is done with a machine specifically designed for this purpose.
Appointments are not necessary, as walk-ins are welcome. A free cholesterol screening is available to each donor. Prospective donors who had tattoos or self-piercings in the past year might be denied the opportunity to donate. For those who give blood throughout the year, there is a 56-day waiting period between donations.
For information about the blood drive, call 724-334-6066 or email Stella Milburn.