The American Red Cross has a severe shortage of type O blood and urges type O donors – as well as eligible blood and platelet donors of all blood types – to give now to ensure lifesaving patient care isn’t impacted this winter.
Type O blood is the most in-demand blood type, helping patients facing life-threatening conditions and emergencies every day. Type O negative blood can be transfused to patients with any blood type and is what emergency room personnel reach for when there’s no time to determine a patient’s blood type. Type O positive blood is also especially needed because it is the most transfused blood type and can be given to Rh-positive patients of any blood type.
Having a readily available blood supply is critical for patients like Luna Giles, who at the age of 1 1/2 has already underwent two heart surgeries and required over a dozen transfusions.
“Each time, the nurse would bring in a bag of blood for her transfusion, I noticed a small label on each one that said ‘Donation Type: Volunteer,’” said Luna’s mom, Jessie Giles. “It made me think about each individual who donated blood for my daughter. I would never know who those individuals were, and they would never see the effect their donation had. But each of those individuals, strangers to us, absolutely saved my daughter's life. They may never know it, but to me, they are heroes.”
Right now, the Red Cross has less than a three-day supply of most blood types, and blood products are being distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in. Recent snowstorms and severe weather in many parts of the country have forced hundreds of blood drive cancellations, causing more than 20,000 blood and platelet donations to go uncollected.
Individuals of all blood types – especially type O – are asked to make an appointment to donate blood or platelets by downloading the free American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
HBO and Red Cross invite Game of Thrones fans to Bleed #ForTheThrone
To celebrate the final season of Game of Thrones, HBO and the Red Cross have partnered to ask fans and blood donors to Bleed #ForTheThrone this March. This is the largest blood donation promotional effort by an entertainment company in Red Cross history – with six days of coordinated giving March 7-12 from fans and blood donors at blood drives in 43 states across the U.S., including an immersive blood drive experience at South by Southwest in Austin, Texas.
As part of the partnership, fans who come to donate blood or platelets with the Red Cross now through March 17 will automatically be entered for a chance to win one of five trips to the season 8 world premiere of Game of Thrones. The trip includes travel for two, up to two nights hotel accommodations and a $250 gift card for expenses. Terms and conditions apply and are available at RedCrossBlood.org/HBOGameofThrones.*
Additionally, those who come to donate March 7-12 will also receive exclusive Game of Thrones swag including a T-shirt, stickers to unlock a unique Snapchat filter and other items, while supplies last.
How to donate blood
Simply download the American 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, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.
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.
*Terms and conditions apply. Sweepstakes is open only to individuals who are legal residents of the United States, physically located in one (1) of the fifty (50) United States or the District of Columbia, and at least the age of majority or older (which is 18 in most states but is 19 in Alabama and Nebraska and 21 in Mississippi) at the time of entry. Valid email address is required. There is a limit of four (4) total Entries permitted per entrant, regardless of method of entry, during the Sweepstakes Period. Winners will be selected and notified by email on or around March 20, 2019. Each potential Prize winner will have 24 hours from the time of the email to respond to notification of winning and accept the Prize; failure to respond within 24 hours will result in disqualification and an alternate potential Prize winner will then be selected in the same manner, time permitting. Offer is non-transferable and not redeemable for cash. Void where prohibited. Sweepstakes begins Feb. 19, 2019, and ends March 17, 2019. All gift cards are subject to individual merchant terms and conditions, and all trademarks are property of their respective owners.