CAMARILLO – To help offset the blood supply shortage occurring due to the COVID-19 outbreak, Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin (D – Thousand Oaks) collaborated with the American Red Cross, Conejo Valley Recreation and Park District and other local organizations to host six blood drives throughout Ventura County.
As of March 30th, nearly 12,000 Red Cross blood drives were cancelled across the country because of the Coronavirus outbreak. This resulted in some 325,000 fewer blood donations, which included blood drives throughout the tri-county region. Coordinating blood drives throughout the district is providing much needed relief for patients with the most urgency. Blood donations collected from the first three drives in the Conejo Valley directly benefited 612 patients who required blood and blood products.
“We have received an incredible response to our call for donors, with more than 200 appointments filling up within minutes for our first three drives,” said Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin. “Our community is determined to support one another as we face this pandemic together.”
Californians can still go out and donate as it is recognized as an essential activity under Governor Newsom’s ‘Stay at Home’ order. Additional safety measures like spacing beds 6 feet apart have been enacted for the safety of donors and staff, who are also being screened for temperature and upper-respiratory symptoms.
“With the unprecedented number of blood drives being canceled due to Coronavirus, we asked for the public’s help and Assemblymember Irwin stepped up,” said Tony Briggs, CEO of American Red Cross Central California. “Within hours, she and her team sponsored and promoted three blood drives in her district. Thanks to her leadership, the American Red Cross can continue supplying lifesaving blood to patients in need.”
In addition to hosting multiple blood drives, Assemblymember Irwin is working to keep Ventura County residents informed through weekly English and Spanish language Teleconference Town Halls. Listeners are able to submit questions based on different topics pertaining to Coronavirus/COVID-19, its impact on our community, and to learn more about the resources available to them.
The Assemblywoman has also collaborated with the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office of Emergency Services to have her two office locations, in Camarillo and Oxnard, serve as drop-off sites for donations of new, unused personal protective equipment (PPE) to assist health care providers responding to the novel coronavirus. All donations received will be distributed to local hospitals, first responders and essential medical facilities.
“While we may be in uncertain times, one thing I am certain of is the ability of the community I represent to come together in times of urgent need,” concluded Irwin.
Assemblymember Irwin is sponsoring today’s blood drive in Oxnard at Pacifica High School from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and two at the Thousand Oaks Teen Center on April 21st and 28th. To make an appointment, visit RedCrossBlood.org.
Assemblymember Irwin’s website: http://asmdc.org/irwin
Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin represents California’s 44th Assembly District, which includes the communities of Camarillo, Casa Conejo, Channel Islands Beach, El Rio, Lake Sherwood, Moorpark, Oak Park, Oxnard, Port Hueneme, Santa Rosa Valley, Thousand Oaks, and Westlake Village.