Significant Shortages Impact U.S. Blood Supply
An Immediate Nationwide Need for Blood and Platelet Donors this Summer
WASHINGTON D.C. – July 11, 2016 — AABB, America’s Blood Centers and the American Red Cross are issuing a critical appeal for blood and platelet donors across the country. With the nation’s blood supply facing significantly low inventory levels, the blood community encourages individuals throughout the U.S. to schedule an appointment to donate today.
“Maintaining a safe and adequate blood supply is critical to the nation’s public health and a priority for the medical community,” said Miriam A. Markowitz, CEO of AABB. “Every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood. It is indispensable and required in the treatment of millions of patients, including individuals with cancer and other life-threatening diseases, patients undergoing organ transplants and trauma victims.”
Summer is always a challenging time for blood centers to ensure an adequate blood supply due to donors taking vacations and schools being out of session. Despite the season, the need for blood remains constant and patients continue to depend on the generosity of blood donors to meet that need. All blood types are needed.
It is the blood that has already been collected, screened and tested that is used during an emergency. Eligible blood donors are encouraged to schedule an appointment to give.
Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental consent in most 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.
AABB is an international, not-for-profit association representing individuals and institutions involved in the fields of transfusion medicine and cellular therapies. The association is committed to improving health through the development and delivery of standards, accreditation and educational programs that focus on optimizing patient and donor care and safety. AABB membership includes physicians, nurses, scientists, researchers, administrators, medical technologists and other health care providers. AABB members are located in more than 80 countries and AABB accredits institutions in over 50 countries. For more information, visit www.aabb.org. AABB is responsible for the Interorganizational Task Force on Domestic Disaster and Acts of Terrorism. The Task Force membership includes representatives from government agencies as well as blood establishments.
About America’s Blood Centers
Founded in 1962, America’s Blood Centers is North America’s largest network of community based, independent blood programs. Recognized by the U.S. Congress for its critical work in patient care and disaster preparedness and response, the federation operates more than 600 blood donor centers providing half of the U.S., and a quarter of the Canadian blood supply. These blood centers serve more than 150 million people and provide blood products and services to more than 3,500 hospitals and healthcare facilities across North America. America’s Blood Centers’ U.S. members are licensed and regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Canadian members are regulated by Health Canada. For more information, please visit www.AmericasBlood.org.
Contact: Public Affairs Desk, Telephone: (202) 303-5551, FOR MEDIA ONLY
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.
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