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Emergency Department teams at U-M, Ohio State square off in mini Blood Battle

Two Emergency Departments compete to see who can get more staff, trainees and faculty to donate blood in annual competition

ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Emergency Department personnel at the University of Michigan Health System and the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center know how crucial blood donations are for their patients.

So they’ve decided to encourage those life-saving donations with a challenge that piggybacks on the long-standing Blood Battle between the two schools, in a new ED vs. ED blood battle challenge.

Each Emergency Medicine department is attempting to get the most ED team members to donate blood (or try) during the remaining Blood Battle drives, including the Be a Hero at the Big House event this Sunday, Nov. 16 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Michigan Stadium. Parking is free and attendees get a VIP view of the stadium, perfect for photos! Plus free t-shirts, refreshments, close up look at trophies and more.

 If U-M wins the ED vs. ED challenge, OSU chair of Emergency Medicine, Tom Terndrup, M.D., will wear U-M gear for one day on service in his Emergency Department. But if U-M loses, Robert W. Neumar, M.D., Ph.D., chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine at U-M, will have to wear Buckeye gear for a day on service in the University Hospital ED.

“Our staff witnesses the impact of life-saving donations of blood almost every day. It saves lives. So it’s appropriate that we get involved in a challenge like this. The real winners will be those who benefit from the blood supply, but it doesn’t hurt that we’re also hoping to beat the Buckeyes,” says Neumar, who is also professor of Emergency Medicine at the U-M Medical School.

All U-M Health System staff are encouraged to participate in the Blood Battle, which ends with two drives at Towsley Center in University Hospital on Nov. 25 and 26 from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The Blood Battle event is sponsored by the American Red Cross Blood Services Region of Southeastern Michigan, as well as the student organization Blood Drives United with support from the Washtenaw County American Red Cross Club at U-M, and other student organizations on campus. More than 30 drives around the U-M campus have been scheduled, beginning Nov. 3 and ending Nov. 26.

Go to redcrossblood.org or wolverinesforlife.org to register. Use the sponsor code “goblue” or zip code 48109.

Wolverines for Life is a collaboration between the U-M Health System, Michigan Athletics and other University of Michigan groups, schools and departments, along with the American Red Cross, Be the Match/National Marrow Donor Program, Gift of Life Michigan and the Michigan Eye-Bank.

There are three annual fall challenges between U-M and Ohio State – the Wolverine vs. Buckeye Challenge for Life, the Blood Battle and the Marrow Matchup. Each school tries to beat the other in collecting blood donations, organ donor sign-ups and registrations to the Be the Match bone marrow registry before their teams meet on the gridiron Nov. 29, this year at Ohio State. In 2013, U-M won all three challenges.

“Be a Hero at the Big House,” is in its fourth year and is expected to be U-M’s largest donor drive ever. The event is scheduled Nov. 16 at Michigan Stadium in the club levels. From 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., participants can donate blood, sign up on the Michigan Organ Donor Registry, be screened for bone marrow donation as well as tour the club-level seating area and take photos with trophies or the stadium as a backdrop. Appointments for blood donation can be made at www.wolverinesforlife.org. Click on the Donate Blood button.

Signing up for the organ donor registry or participating in the Be the Match screening for bone marrow does not require an appointment.

Those who donate at the Big House event will be entered into raffle drawings for various prizes. Parking will be free at the stadium near the club-level doors on the Crisler Arena side.

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