Blood Drives Scheduled in the San Luis Valley – Free Antibody Testing

Three blood drives will be taking place in the San Luis Valley, with social distancing guidelines in effect.

“We are encouraging appointments only at the blood drives right now,” said Megan McCarter, donor recruitment representative for Vitalant, the company conducting the blood drives. “Walk-ins will not be allowed.”

Making an appointment will allow the staff of the blood drive to be able to keep donors at the state-requested six-foot distancing from each other. Blood donation operations such as blood drives are not considered “gatherings” under the current social distancing guidelines, but as essential health-care activities.

In addition, for free, donors will learn about their antibody status for COVID-19. Vitalant will use an FDA approved test, regardless if the donors show symptoms. Blood donations are critically low, especially for types O, A-negative and B-negative red blood cells.

Cliff Numark, Vitalant’s Chief of Marketing, added, “A positive antibody test does not mean that someone is immune to COVID-19. But they might be eligible to donate plasma in the future to help patients who are battling COVID-19.”

The following is a list of upcoming blood drives in the San Luis Valley:

  • Monte Vista Community Blood Drive: June 10, from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the LDS Church, located at 99 W. Prospect Avenue in Monte Vista. To schedule an appointment, call the Vitalant Appointment Center at 1-800-365-0006, ext. 2.
  • Conejos County Community Blood Drive: June 12, from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the SLV Health La Jara Clinic, located at 509 E. Main Street in La Jara. To schedule an appointment, contact Ann Holmes at 719-274-4477.
  • Alamosa Community Blood Drive: June 23, from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the LDS Church, located at 927 Weber Drive in Alamosa. To schedule an appointment, call the Vitalant appointment center at 1-800-365-0006, ext. 2.

To make an appointment online or for more information on blood donor eligibility, frequently asked questions about blood donations during this pandemic, and the most up-to-date donor information, please go to Vitalant’s website at www.vitalant.org.