CORVALLIS - After a shaky start, Oregon State University's November blood drive took in more than 1,000 units of blood destined to help hospitals through the Northwest, American Red Cross officials said.

"The OSU blood drive was very successful. This is the fourth November in a row that more than 1,000 units have been collected," said Douglas Tracy, Red Cross spokesman.

The three-day total for Nov. 13-15 reached 1,006 units, Tracy said. The first day of the drive saw a unusual number of deferrals, resulting in a number of donors willing, but unable, to give blood, Tracy said. Among college populations, blood bank officials say that low iron, colds, medication and recent tattoos or body piercings are usually the top reasons for deferrals. Travel histories and recent donations are also among reasons for deferrals.

The OSU drive was coordinated by Noel Mingo of the College of Health and Human Performance, and featured numerous campus volunteers.

"These OSU blood drives would not happen without the hard work of a host of dedicated volunteers," Tracy said. "Their work is greatly appreciated. Everyone can be proud of the fact that because of their efforts more than 4,000 people may be helped with the gift of life. The OSU drive provided a day's need of blood and blood products for the entire Pacific Northwest region."

The OSU drive is largest Red Cross blood drive in the Northwest region, Tracy said. The next OSU drive is Feb. 12-14, but Tracy said the need for blood is constant with the Red Cross hosting between 15 and 20 blood drives each day throughout the region. For information about becoming a donor, call 1-800-GIVE-LIFE.



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Douglas Tracy, 503-284-0011, Ext. 402