May 8, 2020 – On a recent April day, a popular neighborhood pub, frequented in normal times for its famous fish and chips, pushed aside its empty tables and chairs that now await the return of customers when Ohio’s bars and restaurants will be permitted to reopen this month under the governor’s order.
The Old Bag of Nails was making room for Versiti Blood Center of Ohio to set up stations for a blood drive that will help replenish supplies diminished by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The pub is one of several corporate partners that have volunteered to help The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center by serving as a blood donation location. The medical center is increasing its blood supply as it prepares to resume elective surgeries this month.
DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse, Casto and Roosters Restaurants are also participating, according to Kelly Scheiderer, Heart and Vascular Center and Richard M. Ross Heart Hospital administrator, who is coordinating the blood drive for the medical center.
Each corporate partner brings something unique to the table. Casto will enable residents throughout the city to donate blood in a Versiti bloodmobile that comes to their apartment complex, Scheiderer said. Versiti’s bloodmobile will also travel to Roosters’ popular wing locations during peak take-out times, she added.
“This is community leaders facilitating these blood drives and making a lasting impact for the future,” Scheiderer said. “This is a positive way that corporate citizens can help us.”
DSW will hold mobile blood drives at its store locations in Easton, Polaris and Dublin monthly through October. DSW and some other corporate partners are offering a purchase discount to those who donate blood.
“When we heard that additional blood donations were needed in our hometown, we were proud to provide additional resources and participate,” said Angela Holt, director of human resources for DSW.
The demand for blood is expected to increase with the reintroduction of elective surgeries in May that were postponed to accommodate COVID-19 patients, said Jason Galloway, medical center commodity manager. African-American and Latino donors are especially needed to ensure that the medical center has all types of blood available, he said.
The Old Bag of Nails Owner Michael Purdum has personal reasons for supporting a blood drive for Ohio State that go beyond his sense of corporate and community responsibility. Purdum has had “a lot of heart work done,” at the medical center including open-heart surgery and an operation to implement a pacemaker. Opening his restaurant for blood drives, he said, is an act of gratitude.
“When someone saves your life, you owe them something,” Purdum says. “The least I can do is help in any way I can. And, that’s what we’re doing.”
To learn more about sponsoring a blood drive, contact Jennifer Hutchinson at Versiti Blood Center of Ohio at email@example.com or (614) 329-7887.
How you can help
Donate and MoreDonate by phone or online, drop off supplies and other ways to help
Give by MailThe James/Wexner Medical Center Development Office
c/o The OSU Foundation
PO Box 710811
Columbus, OH 43271-0811