Help ensure a diverse blood supply for patients in need

February 4, 2013


 (Feb. 4, 2013) — February is Black History Month, and in the spirit of Dr. Charles Drew, a black surgeon and blood specialist who became the first medical director of an American Red Cross blood bank in 1941, the Red Cross reminds all eligible donors how important it is that donors are as diverse as the patients who need their help. Drew’s pioneering work in blood collection and transfusion laid the foundation for modern blood banks.

All patients are matched by blood type and Rh factor prior to transfusion. For some patients, additional red cell markers in donated blood also have to be matched. These markers are determined by ethnicity and are best found in a diverse donor base. For more information and to make an appointment to donate, visit or call 1-800-RED CROSS.