MEDIC Regional Blood Center is celebrating 50 years of service to east Tennessee. The non-profit agency was chartered by Dr. Carl Nelson on March 28, 1958. Today the agency provides blood and other products to 29 hospitals in 21 counties. Staff members, local elected officials, friends and community donors gathered recently at the MEDIC headquarters in Knoxville for a Founder’s Day celebration in honor of the milestone. Vice Mayor Mark Brown presented a proclamation declaring March as MEDIC month in the city of Knoxville. Mark Miller, deputy director for the Knox County Health Department, made a similar presentation for the county.
MEDIC CEO Jim Decker also unveiled a plaque which will be displayed in honor of Dr. Nelson and his efforts. The agency is also creating a scholarship in honor of Dr. Nelson.
Local blood drives this week will be at the following locations:
• April 4, Blount Memorial Hospital, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m., inside auditorium.
• April 7, Wal-Mart, Alcoa, 1030 Hunters Crossing Drive, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m., Bloodmobile.
• April 8, Maryville High School, 825 Lawrence Avenue, 8:30 a.m. - 3 p.m., inside auxiliary gym.
All donors must be at least 17 years of age and weigh 110 pounds or more. Donors will receive a free T-shirt, a cholesterol evaluation and a year’s credit towards Medic’s Blood Coverage Program. This program exempts donors and their IRS dependents from paying blood collection and processing fees at any U.S. hospital if a transfusion is needed.