Sizzling Heat Impedes Red Cross Appeal to Blood Donors

July 19, 2011


Blood Supply Remains Critically Low

All Blood Types Needed


July 19, 2011 – The American Red Cross continues its appeal to potential blood donors to get out and donate, despite the summer heat.  The Red Cross now needs blood donors more than ever. All types are needed, but especially O negative, which can be used to treat any patient.


While the nation experiences a critical blood shortage, many potential donors are focused on staying in doors, and staying cool.   The demand for blood products remains consistent as those with health issues require blood transfusions on a regular basis.


The American Red Cross encourages potential donors to “beat the heat”, drink plenty of fluids, eat a well-balanced meal, and donate blood at a well air-conditioned blood drive or blood donation center. 


“Patients need blood regardless of the summer heat,” said Scott L. Caswell, CEO, Red Cross Biomedical Services, Missouri-Illinois Region. “We sincerely appreciate our committed donors who are willing to endure the heat, and get out to donate blood.  Their attempt to help a stranger in need is truly heroic.”


Please donate blood on (insert day,date), at (insert locations), (insert address, city, state) between (insert times.)


In effort to thank blood donors who choose to help with this summer’s blood shortage, the American Red Cross has launched a “Be Extraordinary” campaign for donors to turn their typical summer day into an extraordinary gift for a patient in need. 


As an extra incentive this summer, anyone who presents to donate blood with the Red Cross by Sept. 5 is automatically entered into a drawing for a $250 gas card.  On Labor Day weekend, anyone presenting to donate Friday through Monday is automatically entered into a drawing for a $1,000 gas card.  (Optional - All those who attempt to donate will also have an opportunity to purchase discounted Ram’s tickets ($10-$15 savings).


Plus, anyone who presents to donate blood through Wednesday, Sept. 14 is automatically entered into the Red Cross Racing “Summer Drive Sweepstakes” to win a brand new 2012 candy red metallic Ford Fiesta SE, courtesy of Ford Motor Company.  One winner is selected by random drawing on Monday, Sept. 19. 


Please call 1-800-RED CROSS or go to to schedule an appointment to donate blood or platelets.  Platelets may be donated at an American Red Cross blood donation center.  Platelets aid in the clotting process to prevent or stop bleeding and are vital in helping patients with leukemia or other cancers. 


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 give 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 American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation's blood; 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 the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or join our blog at