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Aug 8, 2017 · Saving Lives through Blood Donation—It Runs in the Family in Blood Donor Program

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Lisa Zerby, a Laboratory Assistant in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology at Mayo Clinic, is carrying on her family’s long-standing tradition of blood donation as a third-generation donor.

“My dad has always encouraged me to donate blood,” says Zerby. “He started when he was in his 30s and donated for more than 20 years. His mother (my grandmother) was also a dedicated blood donor and donated just as long as he did.

“My dad isn’t able to donate anymore, so I feel like I need to carry on the tradition and donate blood whenever I am eligible,” says Zerby. “There are so many people who are in need of blood or blood products, so taking the time to donate is just a small thing I can do to help.”

Family Ties
Zerby knows the importance of blood donation and the impact it can have on a family all too well. Her mother was involved in a life-threatening motorcycle accident and needed blood transfusions to save her life.

“I feel a connection to my mom when I donate. If it wasn’t for blood donors, she wouldn’t have received the life-saving transfusions that she needed. It’s a powerful feeling knowing that I am potentially saving someone’s life or multiple patients’ lives.”

How to Donate
For more information about donating blood in Olmsted County in Rochester, Minnesota, call (507) 284-4475 or email donateblood@mayo.edu. For more information about the Mayo Clinic Blood Donor Center, visit http://www.mayoclinic.org/donateblood or like the center on Facebook.

Jul 20, 2017 · Donating Blood Is One Way to “Give Back” to Patients in Need in Blood Donor Program

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For Jennifer Quam, an Associate Project Manager in Mayo Validation Support Services, donating blood is the same as going to work every day—it’s just something she does. Quam has been a blood donor at Mayo Clinic in Rochester for as long as she has been an employee—more than 14 years.

When asked why she donates blood, Quam says,

“I donate because I can. Since I don’t work directly with patients every day, it is a way that I can still give back to patients—hopefully making a difference in someone’s life.”

Making the Connection
Quam also has a personal connection to blood donation. Many of her friends or their children have been recipients of blood transfusions.

“My son was born prematurely, but he did not need a transfusion,” says Quam. “I know, however, that many new mothers and newborns need blood—and that’s why I make sure to donate as often as I can.”

Mayo’s Policy on Blood Donation
What might keep someone from donating? Quam says, “I don’t think some employees realize that Mayo encourages staff to donate during their work hours. If your work unit will be 100% operational while you’re away for that hour, you are allowed time to donate.”

In reality, only 18% of Mayo Clinic staff donate blood, and this number has decreased from recent years. Mayo Clinic’s policy on blood donation during work time states that an employee can receive up to one hour of PTO to donate blood.

How to Donate
For more information about donating blood in Olmsted County in Rochester, Minnesota, call (507) 284-4475 or email donateblood@mayo.edu. For more information about the Mayo Clinic Blood Donor Center, visit http://www.mayoclinic.org/donateblood or like the center on Facebook.

Jun 1, 2017 · One Donation—Lifetime of Change for Those in Need in Blood Donor Program

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Shelley Kleinwort, a Business Intelligence Manager for Mayo Medical Laboratories, has been donating blood for the last 25 years. Growing up in Byron, Minnesota, and being part of the Mayo Clinic community, she has always known the need for blood donations and how much they can benefit patients.

“Donating blood is just another way for me to help people in need,” says Kleinwort. “It’s the same to me as my time or donating money to a charity.”

More Than Just Blood Donations
Kleinwort has donated more than just blood products. She also donated one of her kidneys to someone she had never met.

When asked what sparked her desire to become an organ donor, she replied, “During college, I was assigned to complete a project about organ transplants. After completing the assignment and learning about the need for kidney donors, I felt a strong desire to become a living donor. That’s all it took to start the donation process.”

Kleinwort was approved to be a kidney donor, and very shortly after, she donated one of her kidneys to an anonymous patient at Mayo Clinic. She never had the opportunity to meet her organ recipient.

“I didn’t do it for someone to tell me ‘Thank you.’ I did it because I knew someone really needed it,” says Kleinwort. “It’s the same for blood donation. You rarely meet the people who receive your donations, but you know that your blood is going to individuals who truly need it, and that is all the thanks I need.”

How to Donate
For more information about donating blood in Olmsted County in Rochester, Minnesota, call (507) 284-4475 or email donateblood@mayo.edu. For more information about the Mayo Clinic Blood Donor Center, visit http://www.mayoclinic.org/donateblood or like the center on Facebook

May 11, 2017 · Mom Knows Best When It Comes to Inspiring Blood Donation in Blood Donor Program

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For Doug Bodde, a Laboratory Service and Partner Development Manager in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology (DLMP) in Rochester, blood donation has been a part of his life since he was young.

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Bodde is an ideal candidate for blood donation. He is what is considered a “universal donor” (type O negative), meaning, his blood may be used in emergency situations where an exact blood-type match isn’t known or available. And while O-negative donors are in high demand, the American Red Cross estimates that less than 7% of the U.S. population has type O-negative blood.

Mayo Makes Donating Easy

Bodde has been a regular blood donor for many years prior to working at Mayo Clinic, but he admits that he donates far more often now due to the convenience.

“It’s easy to drop by the Hilton Building and donate blood when I become eligible,” he says. “Whenever the Blood Donor Program staff  call me, I just schedule an appointment that’s convenient for me. I know that our patients need blood, and I’m happy to do whatever I can to help.”

Blood-Management Program

In addition to his mother’s influence, Bodde also indicates his work is another reason why he is such a dedicated donor.

“I’ve enjoyed learning about Mayo’s patient blood-management program through a new service line being launched by DLMP and the Department of Anesthesiology. Mayo will share its expertise in blood-product utilization with partner health care organizations around the world. As a donor, it’s reassuring to know that Mayo takes this so seriously and has built such a successful program. It truly reiterates the fact that donating blood to help save others’ lives is a vital part of every community.”

How to Donate
For more information about donating blood in Olmsted County in Rochester, Minnesota, call (507) 284-4475 or email donateblood@mayo.edu. For more information about the Mayo Clinic Blood Donor Center, visit http://www.mayoclinic.org/donateblood or like the center on Facebook

Mar 30, 2017 · When It Comes to Donating Blood, the Needs of the Patient Come First for Shannon Stangler in Blood Donor Program

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Shannon Stangler, a Field Sales and Service Operations Manager for Mayo Medical Laboratories, has been donating blood for 19 years—ever since she stepped foot out of Mayo Clinic’s new employee orientation.

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Donating Made Easy
Shannon began donating at the Blood Donor Center in Rochester in the Hilton Building, but she credits her continual commitment to the addition of the mobile blood drives at other Mayo Clinic locations, which began in 2009.

Stangler explains, “It is so much easier for me to donate when I can just step away from my desk for 45 minutes to an hour right here at the Superior Drive Support Center instead of traveling downtown. Now, I don’t have to worry about finding the time to donate; it’s convenient and fits right into my schedule.”

Giving Back
Stangler credits her motivation to give blood to the fact that she almost needed a blood transfusion when giving birth to her daughter.

She says, “There might come a day when I—or someone close to me—will need to have a blood transfusion, and I want that blood to be available. But not just for me or my family members, for the patients who come to Mayo Clinic every day and end up needing blood or a blood product.

“Once you understand the importance of your blood donation and how much it can influence other people’s lives in a positive way, you are energized to want to become a lifelong blood donor,” adds Stangler. “It’s that feel-good moment that keeps people coming back.”

How to Donate
For more information about donating blood in Olmsted County in Rochester, Minnesota, call (507) 284-4475 or email donateblood@mayo.edu. For more information about the Mayo Clinic Blood Donor Center, visit http://www.mayoclinic.org/donateblood or like the center on Facebook

Feb 28, 2017 · Never Let the Fear of Needles Keep You from Saving Lives in Blood Donor Program

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Benjamin Tetlie, a Financial Representative for Mayo Clinic Global Business Solutions in Rochester, used to have a strong aversion to the idea of donating blood.

“As a child, I fainted every time I had my blood drawn,” he explained. “I fell off the exam table once as a result. I never thought I would be comfortable giving blood.”

Tetlie started working at Mayo Clinic in 2011 in the Emergency Department at Mayo Clinic Hospital – Rochester, Saint Marys Campus. When his coworkers organized a Blood Donor Unit Challenge, he wanted to participate.

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Tetlie has been a regular blood donor ever since.

Tetlie adds, “The Blood Donor Center staff make the whole process so quick and easy for the donor, whether it’s at one of the permanent locations or at one of the blood drives. The center has a sign that states just one donation can potentially save multiple people’s lives. That’s what keeps me coming back.”

How to Donate
For more information about donating blood in Olmsted County in Rochester, Minnesota, call (507) 284-4475 or email donateblood@mayo.edu. For more information about the Mayo Clinic Blood Donor Center, visit http://www.mayoclinic.org/donateblood or like the center on Facebook.

 

Feb 7, 2017 · Blood Donation: The Gift that Keeps on Giving in Blood Donor Program

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The holiday season is a busy time for many people, but Denise Rokke, a quality specialist in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, always insists on making time for others, including finding time to donate blood.

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Overcoming the Obstacles
Rokke has been a blood donor at the Mayo Clinic Blood Donor Center in Rochester since she first started her career at Mayo—more than 32 years ago! She says, “Mayo makes it so easy to donate. It’s not a big deal to step away from work for an hour to give blood if your work unit will function just fine while you’re away. And staff can always donate before or after their scheduled work hours; it takes less than an hour of their time.”

As positive as Rokke is about blood donation, it hasn’t always been an easy task for her to give blood due to her small veins. “I bruise easily, my veins have infiltrated, and I’ve had to take extra time because of a slow draw, but none of these are permanent injuries,” she says. “Despite all these things, it doesn’t stop me from donating. Yes, it can be frustrating, but I keep coming back, time after time, because the benefit to others outweighs these small inconveniences for me. My blood donation may be saving multiple patients’ lives.”

Rokke adds, “Even though it can be difficult for me to donate at times, the Blood Donor Center technicians are really awesome. They work with me to make sure that I am comfortable and understand what is going on during my donation. It makes a big difference.”

How to Donate
For more information about donating blood in Olmsted County in Rochester, Minnesota, call (507) 284-4475 or email donateblood@mayo.edu. For more information about the Mayo Clinic Blood Donor Center, visit http://www.mayoclinic.org/donateblood or like the center on Facebook.

Jan 23, 2017 · Bring on the Good Karma: Blood Donor, Sara Goodman in Blood Donor Program

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For the past 11 years, Sara Goodman has worked as a laboratory assistant in Internal Operations at Mayo Medical Laboratories. But that’s not all Goodman has been committed to during her career at Mayo Clinic. With more than 13 gallons of blood donated at Mayo’s Blood Donor Center in Rochester, Goodman is also a lifelong donor and advocate for blood donation.

“Shortly after I began my job, there was a mobile blood drive at the Superior Drive Support Center, and my coworkers encouraged me to come with them to donate,” says Goodman. “I’ve never looked back, and I have those colleagues to thank for starting me down this path as a lifelong donor. Blood donation is just a part of my life now.”

Dispelling Myths

When speaking with Goodman about what might deter people from donating blood, she responded, “People think they don’t have the time.” It’s a common myth that donating blood will take a lot of time away from the work day. In reality, a typical blood donation takes approximately 45 minutes, and that includes time for eating a delicious cookie—or two.

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Goodman goes on to explain, “A few years ago, a family member of mine needed a transplant, which required a blood transfusion. I know that every day there are individuals in the same situation, and they are appreciative that blood products are available in their time of need. I’m so grateful that my blood donations may help and that they have the potential to save patients’ lives.”

How to Donate

For more information about donating blood in Olmsted County in Rochester, Minnesota, call (507) 284-4475 or email donateblood@mayo.edu. For more information about the Mayo Clinic Blood Donor Center, visit http://www.mayoclinic.org/donateblood or like the center on Facebook.