AABB, America’s Blood Centers and the American Red Cross issued the following joint statement regarding the outpouring of support following the tragic shooting in Orlando, Florida:
“As we celebrate World Blood Donor Day on June 14, AABB, America’s Blood Centers and the American Red Cross want to express our sincere thanks and appreciation for the generous outpouring of support from blood donors in the wake of the tragedy in Orlando.
Not only in Florida, but across the country, the American public has come out to blood donation sites to provide help for patients in need and stand in solidarity, sometimes in long lines, for those affected by this horrific situation. We want to assure you that all blood needs from this event have been met.
It is important to note that, while we have met the needs of this mass casualty event, every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs a blood transfusion. Volunteer blood donors are needed each and every day to help save lives. This weekend’s tragedy illustrates that it’s the blood already on the shelves that helps during an emergency – that’s why it is so critical that eligible donors give on a regular basis to ensure we have a readily available blood supply.
Contrary to circulating rumors, all U.S. Food and Drug Administration donation eligibility requirements remain in place to give blood. All blood collectors in the U.S. are required to follow the rules and guidance issued by the FDA, including blood donation eligibility.
Blood centers often see blood and platelet donations decline during the summer months. AABB, America’s Blood Centers and the American Red Cross encourage eligible individuals to schedule an appointment for the weeks and months ahead – particularly the challenging months of July and August. Visit redcrossblood.org or americasblood.org to make an appointment to donate.”
The AABB Interorganizational Task Force on Domestic Disaster and Acts of Terrorism has been closely monitoring the blood supply needs for the immediate victims and region and the larger national blood supply. The Task Force membership includes representatives from government agencies as well as blood establishments.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides comfort to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; distributes international humanitarian aid; and supports veterans, military members and their families. The Red Cross is a nonprofit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to deliver its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.