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Fall Blood Drive at MC Provides Opportunity to Help Patients in Need

After participating in a Mississippi Blood Services drive at MC last spring, Ingrid Savola enjoys a snack and holds the MBS T-shirt she received for donating blood.
After participating in a Mississippi Blood Services drive at MC last spring, Ingrid Savola enjoys a snack and holds the MBS T-shirt she received for donating blood.

Ingrid Savola always wants to help people. It’s why she’s pursuing a career in healthcare.

Before she graduated from Mississippi College last May, the pre-physical therapy major from Miami, Florida, found a convenient way to support those with urgent healthcare needs: participate in a Mississippi Blood Services Drive at MC.

“It’s my first time ever to donate,” said Savola, who competed as a setter on the Choctaws volleyball squad. “It went really well. A lot of patients need blood, and a lot of potential donors have been hesitant to participate.”

According to Tammy Bouchillon, MBS senior marketing representative, the organization’s blood inventory for the state continues to average approximately 25 percent less than its pre-pandemic production.

“The past two years have presented unprecedented challenges to our mission of maintaining a safe and adequate blood supply to the hospitals we serve,” Bouchillon said. “With so many of the population working and learning remotely, we could not reach donors through the usual venues.

“We cannot fill all hospital orders, which means some patients are not getting the treatments needed. Difficult decisions are made daily by doctors and hospital staff based on the availability of blood.”

MC faculty, staff, and students can help address this deficiency by participating in the quarterly MBS Blood Drive from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Wednesday, Sept. 13-14, in the MBS Donor Coach on the Clinton campus.

MBS personnel ensure that blood donation is safe and simple by conducting a “mini-physical” before each donation. MBS staff check each donor’s temperature, heart rate, blood pressure, and hemoglobin, and ask a series of questions to ensure everyone’s safety.

Valid photo identification is required to donate, and participants must weigh at least 110 pounds. All donors should eat within four hours of their appointment and should drink plenty of fluids before and after donating. All participants will receive an MBS T-shirt and a complimentary $10 Chick-fil-A gift card.

Participants are asked to make appointments online to avoid overcrowding during donations. Donors without online appointments will be accepted as soon as openings become available, but may be subject to longer wait times.

“Appointments are recommended to help us prepare for the number expected and to create a smooth donor flow with little or no wait time,” Bouchillon said.

To register to donate on Sept. 13, click here. To register to donate on Sept. 14, click here.

To shorten the donation time, Bouchillon suggests donors complete a Donor History Questionnaire online on the day of donation – not before. The questionnaire is easily accessible from all mobile devices.

“With a scheduled appointment time and online preparation, the donation process is shorter than ever,” Bouchillon said.

Savola said she would encourage MC faculty, staff, and students to consider participating in the MBS Blood Drive this fall.

“Donating blood is a good healthcare cause, and it shows how much you value others,” she said.

For more information about the blood drive at MC or to find out how your organization could host an MBS blood drive, call Bouchillon at 601.573.4181 or email