Preparation is key to successful blood donation

Healthy individuals are needed every day to maintain an adequate blood supply for patients in need. Once a donor has made the commitment to give blood, it is important to take a few steps to prepare and to help ensure a good donation experience.

The Red Cross recommends:

• Getting a good night’s sleep.

• Eating a good breakfast or lunch.

• Drinking extra water and fluids to help replace the volume you will donate.

• Avoiding caffeinated beverages.

• Eating iron-rich foods to boost your iron level.

“Donating blood is an easy way to help others and only takes about an hour of your time,” said Konnie O’Neil, volunteer coordinator of the Cambridge Red Cross Blood Services. “The Red Cross encourages donors to give blood each time they are eligible; every 56 days for whole blood donations and 112 days for double red cell donations.”

Upcoming Opportunity

A Cambridge Community Blood Drive will be held on Monday, March 12, from 1 to 7 p.m. at the lower level of the American Legion, 200 S.E. Second Avenue, Cambridge.

How to Donate Blood

Call 1-800-Red Cross or visit to make an appointment or for more information. A blood donor card or driver’s license, or two other forms of identification are required at check-in.