The 4th Annual Padres Blood Drive is returning to San Diego this year, but its procedure will be different in order to keep donors safe from the coronavirus pandemic.
Rather than host the event at Petco Park like previous years, this year’s blood drive will be held at Lexus parking lot across the street to make more space for social distancing.
Like other blood drives held in the county, an appointment will be necessary for the Padres’ event and walk-ins will not be accepted. The appointments are an effort to prevent crowds from showing up at any one time.
To ensure proper social distancing during the blood drive, the event will be held over three days, beginning Tuesday and ending Thursday. From 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., donors can participate in the blood drive and will receive a Padres souvenir for the occasion.
Donors are required to wear facial covering at the event and individuals who have been in close contact with a COVID-19 patient in the last 28 days will not be accepted. Anyone who displays COVID-19 symptoms, even if it is just allergies, will also not be permitted to donate.
"It is weird; I really don’t like to go out for that reason," said Linda Galicia, who donated blood. "I don’t want to wear a mask, I don’t want to be exposed so basically, just stay home."
However, Galicia said going out to donate was a worthy cause.
The Padres teamed up with the San Diego Blood Bank (SDBB) for its annual event in order to gather blood at a time when it is most critical. Last week, SDBB said it has a critically low supply of blood and urged San Diegans of all blood types to consider donating.
"So right now, our community is low on blood supply," said Claudine Van Gonka of SDBB. "It’s not unusual going into the summer months. But because of COVID-19, it’s a little bit more of a dire situation this year. It’s local and it’s a national problem so it’s really important for people to donate."
The blood bank hopes to get 100 donations per day. To schedule an appointment to donate blood at the Padres’ Blood Drive, click here.