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A Pint for a Pint

Give blood, get Blue Bell ice cream.

By Jillian Richardson, 11:00AM, Fri. Jul. 23, 2010

A Pint for a Pint
Courtesy of stevendepolo

The Blood Center of Central Texas, Blue Bell Creameries and KASE 101 have announced that their 14th annual Pint for Pint blood donation will be running August 1-14.

It's one way to beat the heat this August: Donate one pint of your blood and get one pint of Blue Bell ice cream. There are over 14 flavors to choose from so get excited! Blood Center of Central Texas spokesperson Cynthia Rowe said, "In the summer, there's always a need for more blood because more people are on vacation and schools are out."

The Pint for Pint will be held at all five donor locations and in all mobile buses. Walk ins are welcome or you can go online to make an appointment.

To be an eligible donor, you must be at least 17 years old, weigh at least 123 lbs and have a photo ID with you. After passing out last time I donated blood, I'd definitely suggest stepping on the scale before you donate to make sure you really do weigh enough.

Not sure what to expect? First you will be asked a few questions to make sure you are in good health, then you will receive a mini-physical which includes checking your temperature and blood pressure. If that's all good, you will begin the donation process. A phlebotomist (that's a fancy word for someone trained to draw blood) will take about a pint of your blood. This part only takes about 10 minutes. And then the best part happens, you are escorted to a room filled with snacks, cookies, juices and in this case ice cream galore.

Your blood will separated into red blood cells, platelets and plasma. The red blood cells are used to help people undergoing major surgeries or who have been in an accident. Platelets are donated to those undergoing treatment for cancer. The plasma will be used to treat clotting disorders, burn victims and shock. One pint may not seem like a lot, but your one donation can save two lives. And who knows, maybe you'll turn out to be the next James Harrison, whose rare blood type has saved over two million babies suffering from Rhesus disease.

The thought of a needle may scare you to death, but if you can get over your fear you will be able to change someone's life. Visit the Blood Center of Central Texas website for more information about the Pint for Pint drive or for information about the donation process.

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