The American Red Cross is urging blood donors to give in the final weeks of summer to help overcome a critical summer blood shortage. The summer months are among the most challenging times of year to collect enough blood and platelet donations to meet patient needs. Many regular donors delay giving while they take vacation and participate in summer activities. The need for blood does not take a summer break though.
Two summers ago, Kelly Griswold was involved in a life-threatening jet-ski accident while vacationing. She was airlifted to a hospital and underwent three surgeries over the course of two days. Griswold, a blood donor prior to the accident, suddenly knew what it was like to be on the receiving end of blood donations. “Without the support of people that can give blood, the ones who have needed it would not be here today – myself included,” she said following the incident.
Donors of all blood types are urgently needed to give now to help ensure blood is available for patients in need. Those who donated blood earlier this summer may be eligible to donate again. Blood can be safely donated every 56 days, and double red cells can be donated every 112 days. In appreciation for helping to save lives, those who come to donate blood or platelets with the Red Cross now through Aug. 31 will receive a $5 Amazon.com gift card claim code.
Schedule an appointment to give blood by downloading the free Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling (800) 733-2767. To help reduce wait times, donors are encouraged to make appointments and complete the RapidPass online health history questionnaire at redcrossblood.org/rapidpass.
The next Shiawassee County Red Cross blood drive will be held in Perry, from noon until 5:45 p.m., at the Perry Baptist Church, 217 S. Main Street.