American Red Cross seeks blood donations to prevent summer shortage

Published: Jul. 18, 2022 at 11:19 AM EDT
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(CNN) - Every two seconds, someone in the United States needs blood or platelets, according to the American Red Cross, but every summer, blood donations go down.

”In June alone, we saw a 12% decline in donations, which is very significant and more than we have seen in many, many months,” Rodney Wilson with the American Red Cross said.

Summer months are always a struggle for blood collections because travelers are on vacation, blood drives can’t be hosted at closed schools and people tend to make less time to donate.

Wilson says the pandemic also has not helped.

”Lots of factors related to COVID continue to make it hard for us to collect enough blood,” he said.

The American Red Cross says whole blood is the flexible type of donation. It can be transfused in its original form or seperated into red cells, plasma and platelets to help multiple people. It is often given to trauma patients or those having surgery.

”The need for blood can come up unexpectantly and suddenly at any time,” Wilson said.

Wilson says more donors of all blood types are needed to prevent typical summer shortages.

”On average, the Red Cross needs to collect close to 13,000 blood donations every single day to support patients at 2,500 hospitals across the country,” he said.

Wilson says donating only takes about an hour of your time to help others.

Anyone interested in donating blood can schedule an appointment on the American Red Cross Blood website or donor app. You can also call 1-800-RED CROSS.

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