Red Cross faces blood shortage, seeks blood and platelet donors

Red Cross faces blood shortage, seeks blood and platelet donors

Stanford Blood Center urgently needs blood donations because of a critical shortage.

Spokesperson Nathan Gilbert said weather conditions caused the organization to close 200 blood drive locations nationwide. This is in addition to seasonal illnesses, such as the flu, and hectic holiday schedules collectively contributing to more than 28,000 fewer donations than what was needed in November and December.

In the Mid-Atlantic Blood Services Region, Jay said that almost 600 fewer donations were given than needed during November and December.

Welch said that another Battle of the Badges, which pits emergency service agencies against each other to see who can donate the most blood, would likely be scheduled for February to drum up public support for blood donation.

The American Red Cross must collect more than 13,000 blood donations every day for patients at roughly 2,600 hospitals across the country. Donation appointments and completion of a RapidPass are encouraged to help speed up the donation process. "We're just trying to tell people that if they are eligible and thinking about donating, now is a really good time to do it".

Welch said that Type O negative blood was the most needed because it can be transfused to nearly anyone and is commonly used in trauma situations.

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As the Red Cross offered more local donation opportunities, Steven Walker of Modesto gave a pint Thursday at the donation center on West Orangeburg Avenue. O-negative is a crucial - and rare - blood type because it is compatible with any patient.

The volunteers helping at the blood drive include the following: Esther Sparks, Jane Noard, Judy Szymovicz, Dawn Haggard, Gina Martin, Lee Ann Hannigan, Kathleen Kocielski, Betty Lou Wisen, Shelly Sines and Mary Kibilka.

Mendota: Jan. 12 - noon-5 p.m., OSF St. Paul Medical Center, 1401 12th St.

Newman Fire Department, 1162 N St., 2 p.m. -6:30 p.m. January 24.

Red Cross Donation Center, 1530 Fourth St.

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