In order to offset the extraordinary challenges to the American Red Cross of South Carolina’s mission of collecting lifesaving blood due to the COVID-19 pandemic, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina is donating $100,000 dollars to the organization.
According to Louise Welch-Williams, regional CEO of the American Red Cross of South Carolina, one great concern, among many, is the threat of blood shortages due to an unprecedented number of blood drive cancellations across the country. She said, “The American Red Cross contributes 40% of the nation’s blood supply. At this uniquely critical moment we are facing approximately 300,000 fewer blood donations nationwide even as we face more than $150 million in increased operating cost—all due to the impact of the coronavirus. In South Carolina, 32 hospitals depend on that lifesaving blood being on the shelves and available to meet the need across our communities.”
“Blood shortages affect us all,” said David Pankau, president and CEO of BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina. “At BlueCross, we have a long and proud association with the American Red Cross of South Carolina. Through this donation, we hope to support its efforts to keep blood available for all South Carolinians who need it and encourage other businesses and individuals in supporting the Red Cross of South Carolina by hosting a blood drive, donating blood or making a financial donation.”
There is no evidence and there are no reported cases of the coronavirus – or any respiratory virus – being transmitted by a blood transfusion. Donated blood is essential in the care of patients relying on lifesaving blood transfusions for surgeries, cancer treatments, car accidents and other emergencies. In accordance with public health guidance, blood donation keeps families safe by contributing to a readily available supply of blood for hospitals.
One of the most important things people can do right now during this public health emergency is to give blood. If you are healthy and feeling well, please make an appointment to donate as soon as possible by visiting RedCrossBlood.org.
You can also make a donation, of any size, to help the American Red Cross continue to deliver its lifesaving mission nationwide by visiting redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or texting the word CORONAVIRUS to 90999. These funds will help us make the urgent investments needed to ensure people can continue to turn to the Red Cross for help and hope—when it’s needed most.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation’s blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization – not a government agency – and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org/SC or @RedCrossSC