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Critical Need for Donors — American Red Cross

09 January 2018

Todd Kulman - with the Red Cross of MI - says the severe winter weather over the past few weeks has been a major cause of the shortage, along with high levels of sick people during this cold and flu season.

Extreme winter weather, seasonal illnesses and the busy holiday season contributed to more than 28,000 fewer #blood donations in Nov. & Dec.

More than 150 drives were canceled across the country, including 10 in NY just last week.

The agency critically needs donations of platelets, which have a short shelf life.

The Red Cross must collect more than 13,000 donations every day for patients at about 2,600 hospitals and transfusion centers nationwide.

Platelets: The clotting portion of blood primarily given to cancer patients during treatment and always in great demand.

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The Red Cross is urging eligible donors to support their local blood banks and help save lives. Donors can help even more people by inviting a family member, friend or co-worker to donate too.

Donors of all blood types are needed.

Individuals who are as young as 16 years of age (with parental consent), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in general good health may be eligible to donate blood.

Donors are encouraged to visit the STBTC website at to find a blood drive near them or to schedule an appointment. There's also a Blood Donor App.

Type O negative: The blood type that can be transfused to nearly everyone and is what doctors reach for in trauma situations. Power Red donors give a concentrated dose of red blood cells during a single donation, allowing them to maximize their impact.

Critical Need for Donors — American Red Cross