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gpolit.com January 19, 2018


Critical Need for Donors — American Red Cross

09 January 2018, 01:46 | Darrell Baldwin

Holiday season good time to roll up sleeves

DONATE NOW Blood Service mascot Billy Blood Drop is looking for some

"We know the weather conditions can discourage people from going out and cause them to cancel appointments, but we really need people to keep those appointments", said Kristen Lane, marketing lead for Central Blood Bank.

Twenty-five blood drives across the state were canceled during last week's storm, leaving the Massachusetts Red Cross 681 donations short. The cancelations resulted in over 5,500 blood and platelet donations to go uncollected.

A major blood shortage is being reported by the American Red Cross, and officials are asking the public to help by donating. Further adding to the diminishing supply, hectic holiday schedules, winter weather and an active cold and flu season collectively contributed to more than 28,000 fewer donations than what was needed in November and December.

The need is especially critical on the East Coast which has been socked by frigid temperatures.

The Red Cross must collect more than 13,000 donations every day for patients at about 2,600 hospitals and transfusion centers nationwide.

Nationally, the Red Cross, via donations, provides about 40 percent of the country's blood supply.

Platelets: The clotting portion of blood primarily given to cancer patients during treatment and always in great demand. They can register using a free Blood Donor app available from redcrossblood.org, on the website itself or by calling 800-733-2767.

Eligible donors must be in good health, at least 17 years old and weigh at least 115 pounds. "So when we can cover our hospital needs we like to help out other hospitals in need", said Busta.

Type B negative can be transfused to Rh-positive or negative patients.

The need for blood is constant, so it is important that donations are given on an ongoing basis.



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