35 units of blood collected from OPHS students

First American National Red Cross blood drive of the year takes place on campus


Olivia Papanicolaou / Talon

American Red Cross truck parked outside of the OPHS Pavilion

ASB arranged a blood drive for students to donate blood to those in need on Oct. 19. The American National Red Cross came to Oak Park High School and parked their truck outside of the Pavilion where OPHS students got their blood drawn.

The Red Cross emphasized that the testing of blood is critical to ensure that it is safe to be used in surgical settings.

“I got my iron and blood pressure checked to make sure I was fine for donating blood. I lay down at a table and they put the needle in me and they then took vials of my blood to take tests on before my blood can be used,” sophomore blood donor Corbin Fuchs said.

There are many precautions taken by the American National Red Cross to make sure that the blood hospitals and patients receive is healthy and good for usage.

“For the Blood Drives, we partner with the American National Red Cross to collect blood that goes directly to hospitals and people in need,” School Board Representative and Clubs’ Blood and Food Commissioner Nikita Manyak said.

Each person donates one unit of their blood. In general, people have about 8-12 units of blood in total, so it’s important that the donor is evaluated before the donation so they are kept safe.

There are three blood drives at OPHS throughout the school year: one in the first semester and two in the second. The next blood drive will happen in February.

“It was a good experience from the moment I went in to get my blood drawn. It was a mix of excitement and nervousness, mainly because I hate being poked by needles. The finger prick hurt more than getting the actual blood drawn, but the people were really nice and calmed me down but the snacks at the end were the cherry on top,” Fuchs said.

Donors wait about 5-10 minutes after getting blood drawn, to ensure their safety. They were then thanked with snacks and a t-shirt.

There are different ways the blood collected can be used.

“That blood can be used during surgery, after an accident, or for blood transfusions, if needed. The exact location of where the blood goes is unknown, but due to the fact that we’re in a national blood shortage, the blood would go to whichever hospital or place needs it the most,” ASB member Tess Leong said.

According to ASB and The American Red Cross, the blood drive was successful, providing blood to hospitals and patients that are in need.

“Our blood drive impacted the lives of 105 patients,” Leong said.