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2016-03-17

‘Platelet Power’ campaign launched

Special from the STBTC

Every day of the year, people need the blood component known as platelets, which are vital in the treatment of traumatic injuries
Platelets stop leaks in the bloodstream. Cancer patients need them, since their bodies often cannot produce enough platelets, and so do people undergoing certain types of surgery.
However, platelets have a very shelf life of just five days, which means they’re always in high demand. Medical personnel with the South Texas Blood & Tissue Center (STBTC) launched a campaign in January to educate the public about platelets and encourage donations.
“Platelet Power” includes the release of a series of informational videos about platelets. The videos are in a playlist on the YouTube channel for BioBridge Global, the parent organization of the STBTC.
The videos were released during an internal Platelet Power campaign at BioBridge Global, and all platelet-related materials on social media carry the #PlateletPower hashtag.
The campaign will be carried over to STBTC blood collection drives at all seven fixed donation sites, as well as mobile drives using buses specifically designed for platelet collections.
An email encouraging platelet donations will be distributed to donors throughout South Texas, and a page on the South Texas Blood & Tissue Center explains the donation process and includes details on the science of platelets.
STBTC can extract the platelets from a regular whole blood donation, but it takes approximately six of those extracted platelet components to make a full treatment for an adult. A platelets-only donation normally supplies a complete dose of platelets for an adult patient.
The typical platelet donation takes approximately two hours from initial sign-in to completion, compared to an hour for a whole blood donation. All collection sites, including the mobile centers, are set up so donors can relax and enjoy a movie during their donations.
Platelet donors need to be at least 17 years old and weigh at least 110 pounds.