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Blood drive gets underway

By By JOHN DILMORE JR. Publisher
Citizens of eastern Escambia County will have the opportunity today to give a gift that could mean the difference between life and death for its recipient.
The Red Cross will be holding the Brewton Community Blood Drive today from 1 p.m. until 6 p.m. at the civic center behind city hall.
There are an estimated 7,000 qualified blood donors on this end of the county, and Red Cross representatives are hopeful that some small percentage of them stop by the civic center this afternoon.
For various reasons, the blood collected by drives in this area has been down, and this is seen as a good opportunity to improve the situation.
The region Robinson refers to is a Red Cross designation which covers much of south Alabama and northwestern Florida. Within that region are many smaller divisions in which blood collection efforts are concentrated. Escambia County, for instance, is divided into eastern and western districts.
Blood collected by the Red Cross is sent whereever there is a need for it, Robinson said, which means it could be used anyplace on earth.
A soldier wounded in the Middle East might benefit from a local donation, he said.
The Red Cross conducts about 12 blood drives in eastern Escambia County during the course of the year. Four are community drives such as the one going on today, and the rest are divided between drives conducted at area schools, churches and businesses.
To donate blood, a person must be 17 years of age or older, and must weigh at least 110 pounds, Robinson said.
There is no restriction on how old a person can be to continue giving blood.
A person may safely donate blood once every 54 days, Robinson said.