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American Red Cross Urges Immediate Blood and Platelet Donations in Areas Affected By Hurricane Sandy

Great Lakes

October 30, 2012
 

Blood Products Moved To Areas Affected By Storm

 

Lansing, MI—October 30, 2012—Hurricane Sandy has already caused the cancellation of approximately 300 American Red Cross blood drives in 14 states along the East Coast, resulting in a shortfall of nearly 9,000 units of blood and platelets thus far.  The Red Cross has moved blood products to the areas most likely to be affected by Sandy so these products will be available during and after the storm.

 

“The Red Cross is urging immediate blood and platelet donations in areas unaffected by this storm,” said Todd Kulman, Communications Program Manager for the Great Lakes Blood Services Region of the American Red Cross. “It’s the blood that is already on the shelves that helps save lives before, during and after a disaster.”

 

The storm has the potential to cause power outages and flooding in many areas along the East Coast, which will most likely result in the cancellation of additional blood drives and platelet donations throughout the week.  While Sandy will affect the number of people available to donate, hospital patients still need blood and platelets despite the weather.

 

Nationwide, around 44,000 blood donations are needed every day to meet the needs of accident victims, cancer patients, and children with blood disorders.  If collections are negatively impacted by a disaster, the long-term needs of these patients could also be affected. 

 

To schedule an appointment to donate blood or platelets, please visit us online at redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS.  Please be aware the Red Cross anticipates unusually high call volume over the next several days from those directly affected by the storm and you may experience delays.

 

How to Donate Blood

To schedule an appointment to donate please call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit redcrossblood.org for more information. Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental permission in some states), meet weight and height requirements (110 pounds or more, depending on their height) and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. Please bring your Red Cross blood donor card or other form of positive ID when you come to donate.

 

About the American Red Cross

The Great Lakes Blood Services Region serves 65 counties, and needs to collect about 700 units of blood a day to meet patient need in area hospitals. In addition to supplying about 40 percent of the nation’s blood, the American Red Cross teaches lifesaving skills, provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization—not a government agency—and depends on volunteers and