Red Cross issues emergency call for blood donors

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FARMINGTON — The American Red Cross announced that its blood supply has reached emergency levels with 50,000 fewer donations than expected in June.

This shortfall leaves the Red Cross with half the readily available blood products on hand now than this time last year, said a press release issued by the Red Cross.

The Red Cross is calling on all eligible blood donors to give as soon as possible. All blood types are needed, but especially O positive, O negative, B negative and A negative in order to meet patient demand this summer.

Approximately every two seconds, a patient in the United States needs a blood transfusion, the release stated.

“Blood must be available at a moment’s notice when seconds count to help save or sustain a life. We have reached an emergency situation and the blood will not be there without the immediate response of volunteer blood donors,” said Donna Morrissey, director of communications for American Red Cross Blood Services Northeast Division. “The Red Cross relies upon generous blood donors so we can supply blood when and where it is needed. Right now, patients in hospitals across the country need you to roll up your sleeve and give the gift of lifesaving blood.”

The Connecticut Region is seeking to collect 5,000 blood donations over the next two weeks. The Red Cross is reaching out to eligible blood donors, blood drive sponsors and community leaders to ask them to recruit blood donors.

Eligible volunteer blood donors are asked to please call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit redcrossblood.org to find a blood drive and to make appointments.  Individuals who are 17 years old, 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.