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Blood donations help reduce hospital costs for blood products

bloodIf you have ever felt powerless to reduce health care costs, here's proof that small efforts can amount to big savings: Because so many people donated blood during Upstate University Hospital blood drives from Sept. 1, 2012 to Aug. 31, 2013, the hospital will receive a 3 percent discount on red cells, plasma and platelets it purchases for patient care through Aug. 31, 2014.

"We estimate well over $100,000 in savings per year for the two campuses," says Karla Lauenstein, director of clinical labs at Upstate. Blood donations in Upstate's name help reduce hospital costs and also help keep the Central New York blood supply well-stocked.

From 2012 to 2013, Upstate collected 1,179 units of blood. Many employees donate, but so do visitors and others who find themselves in the vicinity. Every pint collected goes toward Upstate's goal.

Upstate hosts four American Red Cross blood drives per year at the hospital in Downtown Syracuse and on the Community campus. It also will host drives at other Upstate office locations and at the Upstate Orthopedics Bone & Joint Center on Fly Road in East Syracuse.

Make plans now to participate in the next blood drives. Here's the schedule:

* Oct. 17 from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Oct. 18 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the downtown hospital, 750 East Adams, Syracuse.

* Oct. 19 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Upstate Bone & Joint, at 6620 Fly Road in East Syracuse.

* Nov. 6 from noon to 6 p.m. and Nov. 7 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Community hospital, 4900 Broad Road, Syracuse.

* Jan. 8 from noon to 6 p.m. and Jan. 9 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Community hospital.

* Jan 9 from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Jan. 10 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the downtown hospital.

* Feb. 19 in Setnor Hall, one of the academic buildings at the downtown campus.

* April 24 from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and 6 to 9 p.m. and April 25 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the downtown hospital.

* April 29 from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Widewaters Community Room, 5793 Widewaters Parkway, DeWitt.

Walk-ins are welcome, but you will save time by signing up early. Here are the contacts for each location:

* Upstate Community, Jean Pirozzi at 315-464-8668 or rpirozzi@upstate.edu

* Upstate Downtown, Brenda Poehlman, 315-464-5738 or poehlmab@upstate.edu

* Widewaters, Doug Rosenthal, 315-464-8881 or rosenthd@upstate.edu