Red Cross in critical need of blood donations

Faith Castro
July 7, 2017

The American Red Cross declared a critical blood shortage on Wednesday and issued an "emergency call" for blood and platelet donations to help save lives. In fact, donations have fallen short of expectations for the past two months, resulting in about 61,000 fewer donations than what is needed. Blood requirements for patients meeting with accidents or those who are being treated for cancers and blood diseases do not vary over the year or over seasons he explained.

Almost 700 fewer blood drives were held the week of July 4th than an average week - That's the equivalent of the Red Cross not collecting blood donations at any blood drives for more than an entire day.

The organization says fewer people donate around summer holidays because they're on vacation and places such as offices and churches tend to hold fewer blood drives during the summer. According to the statement, donations drop off around the Fourth of July because there are fewer volunteer-hosted blood drives. Almost one-third fewer new blood donors came out to give last summer than during the rest of the year due in part to schools - where blood drives are held and where new donors give - being out of session during the summer months.

There are several fears and myths regarding blood or platelet donation that need to busted and more social awareness is needed. Donors can find the next closest blood drive by visiting the Red Cross donation website, calling 1-800-RED CROSS, or using the Blood Donor App.

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"For a first-time donor, drink plenty of fluids, and eat a good breakfast", said Red Cross blood donor Chris Hunt.

Every two seconds, someone in the US needs blood. He urged new and old donors to come forward and help them restock the hospitals with adequate amounts of blood so that lives are saved.

Blood donations typically dip around the Independence day week.

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