The American Red Cross must be prepared to respond to patient emergencies all across the country with blood products 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Through the everyday support and generosity of blood and platelet donors, the Red Cross can be prepared to do this, no matter when or where these blood products are needed.
The Red Cross sent additional units of blood to a hospital in Alabama earlier this week to help treat patients after tornadoes devastated neighborhoods there, and stands ready to assist further if the need arises.
Weather conditions across the Pacific Northwest and Midwest late last week and throughout the weekend forced the cancellation of more than 1,000 scheduled blood and platelet donations. It’s the blood that was donated in the days and weeks prior to these storms that helped ensure patient needs were met during this critical time.
Each day, approximately 44,000 units of blood are needed for patients in the United States. In fact, approximately every two seconds, someone in this country needs blood, and many of them receive blood from a Red Cross donor.
All eligible donors are encouraged to become an Everyday supporter of the Red Cross and their communities by giving blood or platelets this winter. Donations will help replenish the Red Cross blood supply to ensure that blood products are readily available for patients with serious medical needs.
All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license, or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental permission in some states), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
Visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to learn more and make an appointment to donate. Donors can also share their story about why they give at redcrossblood.org or facebook.com/redcrossblood.