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The voice of De Anza since 1967.

La Voz News

The voice of De Anza since 1967.

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Saving lives only costs a pinch
The hired nurses move around conference room A & B while they prepared to take in donators.
Blood drive sign directs doners into conference rooms A and B. (Mackenzie Jardine)

The conference rooms rumble with laughter and catchy pop music as nurses move around the plethora of tables and donation stations in the Hinson Campus Center on Jan. 25 for the quarterly blood drive. Students, ready for donation, move in and out of the area, checking in at the front table and then sitting for their turn.

Those who want to donate follow a nurse into a private blue tent area where they would have their blood levels checked and see if they were fit for donation.

After the exam, they are led to a chair and put into a reclining position as the nurse in charge of them begins the process of donation. The whole process takes about 45 minutes and can save someone’s life.

Greg Klein, 54, nursing trainer with Stanford Blood Center, stands in front of the wall in conference room A. (Mackenzie Jardine)

Blood cannot be manufactured which makes the importance of donating blood extreme. Greg Klein, 57, a nursing trainer that has been employed at Stanford Blood Center for five years said that the blood center is highly regulated by the FDA and that blood has a shelf life, depending on the product.

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“If it’s platelets (a part of blood cells that initiate a blood clot), it’s as short as five days. We test for all known communicable diseases and (the testing) takes about two or three days depending on the product. So, the shelf life (of a platelet) would be (about) three days,” Klein said. “Whole blood, which is what we’re doing here (at the blood drive) would be about 35 to 42 days.”

Blood drive banner hangs in the quad next to the Hinson Campus Center on Jan. 25. (Mackenzie Jardine)

Jerick Toledo, 29, is a nurse that was hired by Stanford Blood Center after a 12-to-13-week training program. The program ensures that all nurses understand blood pressure, needle technique and what makes a potential donor eligible or not. The eligibility varies from person to person so having a big donor pool is necessary.

“We try to expand our accessibility to everyone,” Toledo said. “Our main goal is to supply blood for patients that need it.”

Blood types can equate to eligibility, despite (the blood drive) taking any and all people. O positive and O negative are universal donors, but the positive and negative typing of the blood actually makes a difference, the O negative being the superior out of the two, Toledo said.

Toledo declined to have his photo taken.

There is always a need for blood, so there is always a need for donations.

Su Myat Wutye, 21, electrical engineering major poses in front of a wall in conference room A while she waited to have her blood drawn. (Mackenzie Jardine)

Blood drives hope that people become lifelong donors. College students tend to be younger which allows them to donate many times throughout their lifespan. It’s important for people to enjoy the experience and want to come back again and again, Klein said.

Su Myat Wutye (who prefers to go by Su), 21, an electrical engineering major, always had a desire to donate blood in her home country but couldn’t because she was only 18 at the time. Soon after that, COVID-19 hit, causing her to miss her chances all together. When she came to the U.S., she still had that desire.

“I saw the advertisement in the cafeteria and (thought) why not give it a try? I wish to help in any type of way,” Su said.

Isabel Nelson, 22, psychology major smiles outside of the Hinson Campus Center after donating blood on Jan. 25. (Mackenzie Jardine)

Donating blood can have people hesitant between the potential woozy feeling and the large needle, but Isabel Nelson, 22, a psychology major, assures it’s easy and has great benefit.

“You can save a life. It’s really simple and just a little prick,” Nelson said, after her donation. “I feel fine. It’s a good thing to do. People should donate.”

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About the Contributor
Mackenzie Jardine, Editor-In-Chief
Hi! My name is Mackenzie Jardine, and I am really excited to connect with people through journalism. I'm very excited to be La Voz's Editor-In-Chief this winter quarter! It's an honor to be in charge of this quarter's paper and work with the incredible, hard working and talented staff. Thank you for supporting La Voz!

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