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The annual ABC7 Great Chicago Blood Drive helps save lives

Media contact: Joy Squier, 312-384-0454, @RedCrossBloodHA,

The annual ABC 7 Great Chicago Blood Drive helps save lives 

Blood drive comes as Red Cross has critical need for blood

CHICAGO (Dec. 22, 2016) — The Red Cross has a critical need for blood donations. Holiday plans, inclement weather and seasonal illnesses can keep eligible donors from giving, creating a greater need for donations during the winter. ABC 7 Chicago is stepping up to help by hosting the Great Chicago Blood Drive on Jan. 9, 2017, from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Hyatt Regency- Grand Ballroom and from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Drake Oak Brook Hotel, 2301 York Road, Oak Brook. While helping to save lives, participants may enjoy entertainment from Medieval Times and receive a free ABC 7 Great Chicago Blood Drive T-shirt, while supplies last. 

“Someone needs blood every two seconds in the U.S.,” said Celena Roldan, chief executive officer of the Chicago & Northern Illinois Red Cross. “Blood donations of all types are critically needed in the coming days so patients can continue to receive the treatment they need. The Red Cross appreciates ABC 7 and community members for their support.” 

Donated blood may be used to help accident victims, surgery patients, organ transplant patients, and those receiving treatment for leukemia, cancer or sickle cell disease. There is no substitute for donated blood products. Each day, the Red Cross needs 14,000 blood donations to meet the needs of patients at approximately 2,600 hospitals and transfusion centers across the country. 

“While all blood types are needed, those with types O, A negative and B negative blood are encouraged to make a Power Red donation at this blood drive,” said Raul Mora, manufacturing director with the Red Cross. “Power Red donors give a concentrated dose of red blood cells during a single donation, allowing them to maximize their impact.” 

Along with presenting partner, ABC 7, the Great Chicago Blood Drive is supported by media partners, Univision Chicago, Clear Channel Outdoor and iHeart Media Chicago; Power Red Sponsor, USG; Social Media Sponsor, Wintrust; In-kind Sponsor, Medieval Times; and location hosts, Hyatt Regency Chicago and The Drake Oak Brook Hotel.

How to donate blood

Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit entering sponsor code “Hyatt Regency” or “Drake Oak Brook” or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information. 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 consent 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.

Blood donors can now save time at their next donation by using RapidPass to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, prior to arriving at the blood drive. To get started and learn more, visit and follow the instructions on the site.

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 or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.