BBHHS blood drive to address critical shortage

Shatha Damra, Staff Writer

Over the last couple years, the blood availability in hospitals has been dangerously low. According to the Red Cross website, Covid-19 is the main reason this shortage is happening, and hospitals are in dire need of blood. Doctors have been deterring patients from major surgeries because of the shortage.

Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School has hosted blood drives for years, but donations are needed now more than ever, said Dawn Ferrante, a math teacher at BBHHS. This year, the  blood drive will be on March 18 from 7:15 am to 12:30 pm.

Ferrante and Michelle Milanich, an English teacher at BBHHS, lead these blood drives together. Ferrante has been hosting these blood drives since the mid 1990s, and Milanich joined her five years ago.

Students that are at least 17 years old have the chance to help up to three people in need with their blood donations. Students that are 16 years old are also eligible to donate with parental permission. There are multiple other requirements that donors must meet, however. Ferrante said that you must be at least 110 pounds to be eligible to donate, but it also varies depending on your height. To see if you meet the requirements, you can visit 

“To sign up for a time to donate, visit the QR code that is available on the posters,” said Ferrante. She has been donating for as long as she can remember. “It’s such a great feeling knowing that every time I donate, I’m helping up to three people.” she said. “And if you’re scared of the process, believe me, I was too. I did it a lot when I was younger as well.”

Ferrante and Milanich provided some tips to make first time donors more comfortable. According to Ferrante, the most important part is replenishing afterwards. “It is also very important to make sure you’re taking care of your body beforehand. Eat and drink healthy and well the morning you donate. Sugar isn’t bad after you’re done either.” she said. Ferrante also said to relax, don’t be scared, and believe everything will be okay.

Milanich is also a frequent donor. “It’s simple and it is easy to do! If you’re a first timer and eligible, just give it a try. It’s never too late to talk to previous donors about their experiences.” she said. Milanich also said, “I have donated several times. It can cause light-headedness, but it’s mostly just a matter of being comfortable.”