Published: Sat, January 13, 2018
Medicine | By Earnest Bishop

Red Cross faces blood shortage, seeks blood and platelet donors

Red Cross faces blood shortage, seeks blood and platelet donors

"Last week's massive winter storm had a significant impact on our blood supply with blood drives cancelled from SC to ME", said Chris Hrouda, president, Red Cross Blood Services.

This is especially good news for everyone who works outdoors, including the American Red Cross New Jersey Region. Seasonal illnesses have also impacted blood donations by contributing to more than 28,000 fewer donations than were needed in November and December. But storms across the western part of the state have set back donations.

While at the center one day, she was looking over a list of blood drives in this part of ME and noticed Scarborough was basically absent from the list.

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American Red Cross asks for blood donations nationwide

Illinois Valley Community College instructor and Red Cross volunteer Steve Swett said, "Donors can save up to 15 minutes during the donation process by registering through RapidPass to select their appointment time and fill out health history questions". Accident and burn victims, heart surgery and organ transplant patients, and patients receiving treatment for leukemia, cancer or sickle cell disease may all require blood to help save their lives.

According to the nonprofit's CEO, Ana Montero, since January 1 volunteers responded to more than 35 fires in the state and helped 260 people from 92 families.

O-negative blood is considered the universal donor and can be given to any patient in need, while B-negative blood blood can be transfused to B positive and negative donors. The U.P. Regional Blood Center is one of the many places asking for donations. According to a recent report from Kingsport Times-News, they hold about 650 blood drives at local schools and businesses each year to meet this demand.

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