Medicine

Red Cross In Need Of Donations After Bad Weather Cancels Blood Drives

Red Cross In Need Of Donations After Bad Weather Cancels Blood Drives

Todd Kulman - with the Red Cross of MI - says the severe winter weather over the past few weeks has been a major cause of the shortage, along with high levels of sick people during this cold and flu season. Their shelf life is very short - only five days - while whole blood or red cell donations can last 42 days. The cancelations resulted in over 5,500 blood and platelet donations to go uncollected.

The Red Cross says there's an urgent need now for blood and platelets of all types, although platelets and type O, B and AB blood are at more of a critical juncture. The Red Cross' Danvers facility on Rosewood Drive is open every day for the rest of the month.

Nationally, the Red Cross, via donations, provides about 40 percent of the country's blood supply. Platelets are primarily used in the treatment of patients undergoing chemotherapy. Donors can help even more people by inviting a family member, friend or co-worker to donate too. RapidPass can now be completed on mobile devices and through the Blood Donor App.

Donors were at a blood drive Monday sponsored by the Troy Rotary Club inside the Bank of America building.

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This has put additional pressure on the nation's blood supply (especially for type O-negative and platelets), which is already trying to recover from lower donor turnout over the holidays. "So when we can cover our hospital needs we like to help out other hospitals in need", said Busta. O-negative, the universal blood type that's always in high demand, can be given to patients of any blood type.

"It's an important blood type for emergency situations", Lewis said.

"We encourage everyone who can safely come out and donate to do so", said Debbie Bonzak, executive director for LifeShare Community Blood Services in the release. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission.


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