Since 2003, health organizations and communities around the United States have observed April as Donate Life Month: an annual celebration of those who have received transplants, those waiting to receive the gift of life, donors and their families. Locally, LifeSouth Community Blood Centers — the sole blood provider for many of our area hospitals, including Wolfson Children's Hospital, Baptist Health hospitals, Memorial Hospital and Orange Park Medical Center — is proud to join the celebration by also recognizing blood donors who contribute to successful transplant procedures.
In addition to the blood used during organ transplant procedures, organ recipients may also require whole blood or platelet transfusions as part of their ongoing care. Thanks to organ, eye and tissue donors, as well as dedicated blood donors in Northeast Florida, transplant recipients get a second chance to enjoy life.
“LifeSouth celebrates all who give the gift of life. We are proud to provide a way for members of the Northeast Florida community to participate in that process through the donation of whole blood and platelets,” said Nancy Eckert, CEO of LifeSouth Community Blood Centers.
LifeSouth encourages Northeast Florida residents to participate in National Donate Life Month in one of the following ways:
- Become a blood donor. Approximately 37 percent of the U.S. population is eligible to donate, yet only 5 percent are active donors. LifeSouth welcomes regular and first-time donors to visit its donor centers in Jacksonville, which are open Monday through Friday:
o 800 Prudential Drive (inside Baptist Medical Center Jacksonville)
o 7840 Baymeadows Way
Donors can also find LifeSouth’s signature red, white and blue buses at blood drives throughout the community, seven days a week. Donor center hours, drive locations, and an online appointment scheduler can be found at LifeSouth.org.
- Host a blood drive. Increase the impact of your gift by providing a way for others to give the gift of life, as well. LifeSouth welcomes the partnership of businesses, organizations, churches and professional groups interested in supporting National Donate Life Month.
- Register to become an organ, eye or tissue donor. Visit RegisterMe.org to sign up to become an organ donor.
To find a donor center or blood drive near you, or to learn more about hosting a blood drive, visit LifeSouth.org
LifeSouth is a non-profit community blood bank serving more than 100 hospitals in Alabama, Florida and Georgia. LifeSouth is committed to meeting the blood supply needs of hospitals and their patients by providing the highest quality blood components and services. With more than 30 donor centers, 45 blood mobiles and 2,000 blood drives a month, the LifeSouth team is dedicated to making sure the blood is there when a patient is in need. To learn more, visit LifeSouth.org.