Red Cross: Severe weather adds to blood shortage

Red Cross: Severe weather adds to blood shortage

Red Cross: Severe weather adds to blood shortage

The Red Cross says they are in "urgent need" of blood donations after bad weather halted some of their collection efforts. More than 150 blood drives were forced to cancel because of it, causing over 5,500 blood and platelet donations to go uncollected.

The American Red Cross says a shortage in blood donations for this winter was only made more dire by last week's blizzard. Then if you want to consider the months of November and December leading up to January we saw 28,000 fewer blood donations.

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

The Red Cross is urging eligible donors to support their local blood banks and help save lives.

Platelets: The clotting portion of blood primarily given to cancer patients during treatment and always in great demand. Donors can help even more people by inviting a family member, friend or co-worker to donate too. There's also a Blood Donor App.

Type O negative: The blood type that can be transfused to nearly everyone and is what doctors reach for in trauma situations.

The need for blood is constant, so it is important that donations are given on an ongoing basis. Donors can save about 20 minutes by completing their health history the day they donate using Donor Pass at donateblood.centralbloodbank.org/DonorPass.aspx.

About the American Red Cross:The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides global humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families.

Related news