Red Cross facing blood shortage after lack of donations

Red Cross calls for donations amid blood shortage

The Red Cross is issuing an emergency call for blood and platelet donors of all blood types. "Every day, blood and platelet donors can help save lives, and right now these heroes are needed to give as soon as possible".

According to the American Red Cross, blood donations have fallen short of expectations during the late spring and early summer months.

Summer months are among the most challenging for blood donation centers with schools and colleges out for the summer and many regular donors taking vacation.

"Here in the Penn-Jersey Blood Services Region, we are down approximately 1,200 donations from what we need to meet our patient demand", Communications Manager Alana Mauger said.

"Last year at this time, there was a critical nationwide shortage of blood and many blood centers along the east coast are now issuing an emergency appeal".

"Blood can't be manufactured", said Mauger. The American Red Cross reported that there was close to 700 fewer blood drives in the weeks leading up and following the Fourth of July holiday. "We rely on volunteer donors, and so the blood is used to treat cancer patients, trauma patients, organ transplants, burn victims, you name it". Donation appointments and completion of a RapidPass online health history questionnaire are encouraged to help reduce the time it takes to donate.

"Even the most committed donors can forget to make time to give blood during the busy summer season", said Wilson.

If you would like to give blood, visit the Red Cross website to find the donation site closest to you.

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