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Local
Blood donations badly needed during the holidays
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Blood donations badly needed during the holidays

Blood donations badly needed during the holidays
Photo Credit: Russell Mills

Blood donations badly needed during the holidays

As the Oklahoma Blood Institute moves into the final stretch of its 40th anniversary year, it’s trying to get word out about what it does, and the need for extra help during the holidays.

In those four decades, OBI has grown to become the ninth-largest non-profit blood center in the nation.

OBI Recruitment Manager Kenda Burnham told KRMG Tuesday they serve about 90 percent of the hospitals in the state, and for most of them, are the only source of blood.

“That includes all childrens’, all veterans’, and all Indian hospitals in the state,” she said. “We also supply St. Francis Health Systems, which is the largest user of blood here in northeast Oklahoma.”

That requires a lot of donations.

“It takes close to 1,200 donors every single day to ensure we meet the needs of patients all across our systems,” Burnham said.

And that need does not go down during the holidays, but unfortunately donations often do.

“Holidays are a little more challenging, because people just get out of their regular routine,” Burnham told KRMG. “People are busy doing other things, so sometimes they forget to take time to give blood. So we still have patients in those hospitals, no matter what day of the year it is, that are counting on life-saving blood donors.”

The process takes about an hour for a standard donation, and she said most people actually qualify, even if they’ve traveled out of the country or had a tattoo.

But only about one in ten who can donate, actually do.

Anyone who can help is urged to visit the OBI website and make an appointment, or find a nearby blood drive.

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  • The National Rifle Association’s incoming president has linked school shootings and other violence to using medications such as Ritalin. Retired Lt. Col. Oliver North told “Fox News Sunday” that perpetrators of school violence “have been drugged in many cases” and “many of these young boys have been on Ritalin since they were in kindergarten.” He also blamed a “culture where violence is commonplace,” pointing to TV and movies. North’s comments followed the attack Friday at Santa Fe High School outside Houston that left eight students and two teachers dead. Investigators have given no indication that they believe the 17-year-old suspect, Dimitrios Pagourtzis, used Ritalin, which treats attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or other drugs. Pagourtzis’ attorney, Nicholas Poehl, said Sunday that he was not aware that his client was on any specific medication. He said he was surprised that someone with North’s experience with the criminal justice system would “make those kind of generalizations with a case that’s less than 48 hours old.” An NRA spokesman, Andrew Arulanandam, confirmed North was speaking on the organization’s behalf and said “there are others who share this viewpoint.”
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  • For a second straight day, President Trump used Twitter to go on the attack over the probe into links between Russian interference into the 2016 elections and his own campaign for President, this time targeting a former CIA Director in the Obama Administration, John Brennan, who publicly ridiculed the President and GOP leaders in Congress on Sunday, after Mr. Trump launched a Twitter barrage over the fairness of the Russia probe. “John Brennan is panicking,” the President said of the former CIA chief. “He has disgraced himself, he has disgraced the Country, he has disgraced the entire Intelligence Community.” In his tweets, Mr. Trump placed Brennan at the center of a conspiracy to use the ‘Steele Dossier’ to start what the President says was a politically motivated investigation of the Trump Campaign. “This guy is the genesis of this whole Debacle,” the President wrote, quoting Dan Bongino, a conservative commentator who ran unsuccessfully for Congress in Florida and Maryland. “This was a Political hit job,” the President wrote. “John Brennan is panicking. He has disgraced himself, he has disgraced the Country, he has disgraced the entire Intelligence Community. He is the one man who is largely responsible for the destruction of American’s faith in the Intelligence Community and in some people at the…. — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 21, 2018 ….top of the FBI. Brennan started this entire debacle about President Trump. We now know that Brennan had detailed knowledge of the (phony) Dossier…he knows about the Dossier, he denies knowledge of the Dossier, he briefs the Gang of 8 on the Hill about the Dossier, which…. — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 21, 2018 …they then used to start an investigation about Trump. It is that simple. This guy is the genesis of this whole Debacle. This was a Political hit job, this was not an Intelligence Investigation. Brennan has disgraced himself, he’s worried about staying out of Jail.” Dan Bongino — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 21, 2018 Mr. Trump’s tweets came just a few hours before he was going to the CIA to swear in the new Director of Central Intelligence, Gina Haspel, who was confirmed to the post last Thursday by the U.S. Senate. Ironically, Brennan has been a strong public supporter of Haspel, breaking with many Democrats, who had pressed for her rejection in the Senate. Brennan, who was CIA Director during the second term of the Obama Administration, earned the ire of the President with a Sunday tweet that not only slammed the President, but as GOP leaders in Congress, accusing them of doing nothing in the face of an effort by Mr. Trump to interfere in a lawful investigation of Russian meddling in 2016. Brennan has sniped at Mr. Trump on Twitter before, accusing him earlier this month of lying about the Iran nuclear deal, and arguing he has diminished the office of the President of the United States. “Your hypocrisy knows no bounds,” Brennan tweeted in late April, when Mr. Trump accused former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper of leaking the Steele Dossier to CNN and lying about it. Senator McConnell & Speaker Ryan: If Mr. Trump continues along this disastrous path, you will bear major responsibility for the harm done to our democracy. You do a great disservice to our Nation & the Republican Party if you continue to enable Mr. Trump’s self-serving actions. https://t.co/uAhgL6wfIC — John O. Brennan (@JohnBrennan) May 20, 2018 Mr. Trump: Your hypocrisy knows no bounds. Jim Clapper is a man of integrity, honesty, ethics, & morality. You are not. Jim Clapper served his country for over a half century, including in Vietnam. You did not. By your words & behavior, you diminish the Office of the Presidency. https://t.co/bYlmZInDoM — John O. Brennan (@JohnBrennan) April 28, 2018 The tweets by the President on Monday morning did not rival his outburst on Sunday, in which he savaged the probe of Special Counsel Robert Mueller, and said he would demand a review of whether the investigation was political in nature. Top Justice Department officials responded on Sunday evening by saying they would have the Inspector General review Mr. Trump’s claims. It was not immediately clear if that move satisfied the President, who made this declaration Sunday afternoon on Twitter: I hereby demand, and will do so officially tomorrow, that the Department of Justice look into whether or not the FBI/DOJ infiltrated or surveilled the Trump Campaign for Political Purposes – and if any such demands or requests were made by people within the Obama Administration! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 20, 2018 Democrats derided the President’s outburst on Twitter, again saying the Mueller investigation should be allowed to go forward without interference. “Trump can wriggle and squirm and spew on Twitter all he wants, but in America the law will run its own course,” said Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI).
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