N.J. residents enticed to give blood

Just in time for the usual seasonal falloff in blood supplies, New Jersey officials have a new way to encourage people to give blood.

Health Commissioner Mary O’Dowd says everyone who donates blood in New Jersey from now until January 17, 2014 will get a chance to win tickets for the Super Bowl.

“We think that we’ll be able to make a lasting impact on New Jersey’s chronic shortage of blood because people who are donating for the first time because of the incentive of Super Bowl tickets may continue to donate blood into the future,” she said.

O’Dowd says New Jersey’s blood collection rate is below the national average and drops in the summer months when people are on vacation.

She says hospitals in the state often have only a two-day blood supply and is hoping donations increase so they won’t have to cancel elective surgeries.

O’Dowd says one in every seven patients entering a hospital needs blood, and one blood donation can save up to three lives.

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