A donation shortfall over the winter holidays is prompting the American Red Cross to issue an emergency call for blood and platelet donors to give now to prevent a blood shortage from continuing throughout winter and affecting patient care. The Red Cross collected more than 27,000 fewer blood and platelet donations the weeks of Christmas and New Year’s than needed to sustain a sufficient blood supply, as busy holiday schedules kept many donors away.
Right now, the Red Cross has less than a three-day supply of most blood types, and blood products are being distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in.
You can help!
1. Make an appointment to give blood or platelets by downloading the free Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
2. Let your friends and family know there is an emergency need for blood and platelet donors and ask them to #GiveNow.
3. Bring someone to donate with you.
4. Host a blood drive so others can give – be it at your office location, place of worship or community organization.
Your support can help ensure that blood products are there for trauma victims, premature babies, patients going through cancer treatment and others who depend on transfusions for survival.
In May 2018, 4-year-old Branson was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a rare childhood cancer. His treatment plan has included many rounds of grueling chemotherapy, stem cell transplants and surgery to remove the tumor near his kidney and spinal cord.
Branson has received 12 blood and 11 platelet transfusions so far. According to his mom, Erica, “They have been so important to keep him as healthy, active and battle-ready as possible. This is the hardest thing our family has ever faced. However, there is hope in the generosity of strangers who are helping to heal my brave boy. Blood and platelet donations truly are the gift of life!”
Every day, volunteer blood and platelet donors across the country are needed to help save lives. Don’t wait to help. Give now.