American Red Cross officials issued an emergency request for platelet and blood donors due to the few donations than expected in June and the first week of July.
This week the organization began asking donors of all types to roll up a sleeve and give blood. Across the nation, donations were down approximately 10 percent in June, which meant about 50,000 fewer donations than expected.
“We are counting on generous volunteer blood and platelet donors to step up and give now,” said Steve Nagle, CEO for the Red Cross Southwest Blood Services Region. “Every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood. Each day donations come up short, less blood is available for these patients in need.”
The Bixby Bulletin, Tulsa's Channel 8's community newspaper partner, reported that the Red Cross urgently needs donations to ensure an adequate blood supply is available for patients all summer long. Eligible donors with types O negative, B negative and A negative blood are especially encouraged to give.
According to the organization, Type O negative is the universal blood type and can be transfused to anyone who needs blood. Types A negative and B negative can be transfused to Rh positive or negative patients.
June can be among the most challenging months of the year for blood and platelet donations as regular donors delay giving while they adjust to summer schedules. High school and college blood drives account for as much as 20 percent of Red Cross donations during the school year.
In addition, a mid-week Independence Day holiday reduced the number of blood drives scheduled in early July. Many sponsors, especially businesses, were unable to host drives because employees took extended vacations.
For more information about donating blood, head to the Bixby Bulletin's website.