January is national blood donor month. Stacy Sime, the manager of a center that supplies blood to more than 90 hospitals in Iowa, Nebraska and South Dakota. says every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood. “Donors of LifeServe Blood Center in 2013 impacted over half a million lives,” she says. “We feel like we’re a vital part of the health care community and creating a healthy state of Iowa.”
The LifeServe Blood Center is located in Des Moines, but holds blood drives throughout the three-state region. It is one of the 15 largest blood centers in the country and Iowa Governor Terry Branstad toured the facility Thursday after signing a proclamation about blood donor month. “Every day approximately 38,000 pints of blood are needed to maintain a safe and adequate blood supply,” Branstad says. “Yet only 10 percent of the population eligible to give blood do so annually.”
Branstad says his wife, Chris, is a “real regular blood donor” who used to co-chair blood drives when they lived in Lake Mills. The governor describes himself as an “occasional” blood donor.