QUINCY, Ill. (Nov. 15, 2018) — To help ensure patients have the blood products they need, the American Red Cross is hosting the 14th annual 12 Hours of Giving Winter Blood Drive Dec. 14, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Red Cross Blood Donation Center, 3000 N. 23rd Str., in Quincy. Those who attempt to help save lives will also receive a Red Cross long-sleeved T-shirt and be entered to win raffle prizes, while supplies last.
This blood drive comes as the Red Cross faces a severe blood shortage. During September and October, the Red Cross collected over 21,000 fewer blood and platelet donations than what hospitals needed – largely due to less groups signing up to host blood drives and worsened by widespread blood drive cancellations caused by hurricanes Florence and Michael. Those who come to donate blood or platelets with the Red Cross from Nov. 25-Dec. 19, 2018, will receive a $5 Amazon.com Gift Card via email. Restrictions apply, see amazon.com/gc-legal. Additional information and details are available at RedCrossBlood.org/Together.
Blood donors of all blood types, especially type O, and platelet donors are urgently needed to give now to avoid delays in lifesaving medical care for patients. Volunteer blood drive hosts are also critically needed to stop the shortage from continuing throughout winter.
The Red Cross is partnering with KHQA-TV for this holiday blood drive. KHQA-TV’s Day of Giving falls on the date of the blood drive. Giving can be done in so many ways Dec. 14. In conjunction with KHQA-TV’s Day of Giving event, the Red Cross Blood Donation Center in Quincy will serve as a collection site for toys for Toy Town. The community is invited to give the perfect gift this holiday season and participate in a long-standing tradition of helping to save patients’ lives.
“We would never be able to host such a successful drive without the incredible support of the community”, said Jim Whitfield, donor recruitment account manager for the Red Cross Heart of American Blood Services Region. “Year after year, the community steps up to the call for blood donations which goes toward helping to save lives. We are grateful for those who respond to the constant need for blood donations at such a critical time of the year.”
The winter months can be among the most challenging times of year for the Red Cross to collect enough blood donations. Many donors are busy with holiday activities, and inclement weather can force the cancellation of blood drives. Additionally, some donors become temporarily ineligible because of seasonal illnesses.
Blood donors of all types are needed. Those with types O, A negative and B negative blood are encouraged to make a Power Red donation at this blood drive. Power Red donors give a concentrated dose of red blood cells during a single donation, allowing them to maximize their impact. Donated blood may be used to help accident victims, surgery patients, organ transplant patients, and those receiving treatment for leukemia, cancer or sickle cell disease. There is no substitute for donated blood products.
How to donate blood
Simply download the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass® to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, from a computer or mobile device. To get started and learn more, visit RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass and follow the instructions on the site.
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 international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit RedCross.org or CruzRojaAmericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.