BLOOD DONORS NEEDED AS HOLIDAY APPROACHES
Greater Chesapeake & Potomac Region
Risk of Bad Weather Could Leave Blood Supply Vulnerable
Baltimore, MD – December 22, 2010: As the Holiday weekend approaches, the American Red Cross, Greater Chesapeake and Potomac Region is asking eligible blood and platelet donors to donate now in order to boost blood supply levels prior to an expected weekend drop in collections. The threat of snowy weather in the forecast could put an even greater strain on blood collections and leave the blood supply vulnerable to shortage following the holiday. To help ensure that all patients receive the blood and platelets they need for survival, the GC&P Region is urging all eligible blood donors to call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to schedule a donation appointment. Donors who are type O, A negative, or B negative are especially needed, and should ask about making a “Double Red Cell Donation” when they call. Platelet donors are asked to call 1-800-272-2123 to schedule an appointment. Donors who are type A or AB are needed for this special procedure, which can be performed at local donor centers.
“We typically see a decline in donations around the holidays and have been working with donors and blood drive sponsors to increase collections over the past few weeks to mitigate any risk of shortage.” said Page Gambill, Director of Hospital Services for the GC&P Region. “However, when winter weather strikes, travel delays could prevent many donors from keeping scheduled appointments and can also jeopardize our ability to receive blood products from other parts of the country. We depend on our local donors to provide these vital blood products to help patients in need.” Blood and platelets are used to treat patients undergoing treatment for cancer, trauma victims, and those with blood disorders, as well as countless other patients in local hospitals.
As a special token of appreciation, all participants in the month of December will receive an EXCLUSIVE American Red Cross Cookbook, featuring recipes from celebrities such as Boog Powell, Michelle Obama, Miss America, and others.
Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental permission in some states), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors younger than 19 years also have to meet certain height and weight requirements. Please bring your Red Cross blood donor card or other form of positive ID when you come to donate.
Members of the community are asked to call 1-800-RED CROSS immediately to schedule an appointment to donate at any American Red Cross Donor Center or community blood drive. Information about Regional Blood Donor Centers or community blood drive locations and times can be found at redcrossblood.org/gcp. Business and community groups that are willing to hold blood drives are asked to call 1-800-787-9282, x4925 for information.
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