Heroes for Moms: Versiti blood drive to be held Oct. 28 in Whitefish Bay

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Versiti and Advocate Aurora Health are teaming up to host the Heroes for Moms blood drive Thursday, Oct. 28.

The drive is open to the public and will take place at the Jewish Community Center Community Hall, 6255 N. Santa Monica Blvd. in Whitefish Bay, from 7 a.m.-7 p.m.

The blood drive aims to raise awareness about the need for blood, especially for individuals who require blood transfusions during childbirth, like drive host Abby Bar-Lev Wiley.

Versiti says when Wiley was pregnant with her second child, it was revealed that she had placenta previa and placenta accreta. She ended up needing a blood transfusion, receiving nine units of donated blood.

"Oct. 28 is a special day for my family and me. It’s my baby’s first birthday and my survivor anniversary – a day that I'm here to celebrate because of blood donation," said Wiley. "Until it happened to me, I had no idea that one of the biggest uses of donated blood is for mothers during childbirth. Because it happened to me, I want to advocate for others and encourage those who are able, to donate blood today. I will never forget the gift of life I received.”

Since 2001, the rate of obstetric blood product transfusion has increased by 33%, according to Versiti. They say 90% of pateints with placenta accreta require a blood transfusion, and 40% require more than 10 units of packed red blood cells.

As a token of gratitude, all attempting donors will receive a Versiti gift bag. 

Anyone age 17 or older who is in good health and meets eligibility requirements is encouraged to donate. 

Versiti says appointments are preferred, but walk-in donors are also welcome. Donors should bring a photo ID that includes their birth date.

To make an appointment for the Heroes for Moms Blood Drive, call 1-877-232-4376 or visit versiti.org.

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