Red Cross Experiencing Blood Donation 'Crisis'

Alicia Farmer
January 11, 2018

January is National Blood Donor Month, a campaign started by the American Red Cross in 1970 to promote winter blood donations across the country. That means American Red Cross in urgent need for blood and platelet donations to overcome this winter blood donation shortage.

"Even temporary disruptions to blood and platelet donations can diminish the availability for hospital patients", Jay said. Presently, the biggest necessities are Type O negative and B negative blood donations, as well as blood platelet donations often needed by cancer patients.

The Red Cross must collect more than 13,000 donations every day for patients at about 2,600 hospitals and transfusion centers nationwide.

Type O negative is the universal blood type and what emergency room personnel reach for when there is no time to determine the blood type of patients in the most serious situations. Those who are eligible can donate red blood cells six times a year-you have to wait 56 days in between donations-and platelet donors can give up to 24 times a year.

Red Cross Experiencing Blood Donation 'Crisis'

Type B negative can be transfused to Rh-positive or negative patients. Donation appointments and completion of a RapidPass are encouraged to help speed up the donation process.

Every two seconds, someone in the US needs blood - a need that is all too real for Heather Hrouda and her family.

"My family and I are so thankful for all the blood donors", said Hrouda. We need your donation and time!

It takes over 3,000 blood donations a week for Bonfils to meet patient needs-and to be ready for the unexpected-in Colorado. The gift of blood (the gift of life) is so important and desperately needed. He's just the kind of donor organizations like the Red Cross are looking for.

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