Thursday, July 7, 2016

Red Cross issues emergency call for blood and platelet donations to address significant shortage

During the past few months, blood donations have fallen short of hospital needs, resulting in about 39,000 fewer donations than what is needed. The American Red Cross has issued an emergency call for blood and platelets, asking all eligible donors to give now to help replenish the low supply.

“Right now, blood products are being distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in, which is why we are making this emergency request for donations,” said Louise Welch Williams, regional CEO for the Red Cross in South Carolina. “Donations are urgently needed now to meet the needs of hospital patients in the coming days and weeks. If you’ve thought about giving blood and helping to save lives, now is the time to do it. It’s the blood donations on the shelves that help save lives when an emergency occurs.”

Every two seconds in the United States blood and platelets are needed to respond to patient emergencies, including accident and burn victims, heart surgery and organ transplant procedures, and patients receiving treatment for leukemia, cancer or sickle cell disease. The Red Cross must collect approximately 14,000 blood and platelet donations every day for patients at about 2,600 hospitals and transfusion centers nationwide.

How to Help
Visit a blood donation center:
American Red Cross Mount Pleasant Blood Donation Center, 920 Houston Northcutt Blvd.
Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 6 a.m. to 2 p.m.; closed Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.

American Red Cross West Ashley Blood Donation Center, 2000 Sam Rittenberg Blvd.
Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 6 a.m. to 2 p.m.; closed Sunday.

Find a blood drive in your neighborhood:
The Red Cross hosts blood drives almost every day in communities throughout the tri-county area. To find a blood drive near you, visit and type in your zip code. These blood drives, hosted by corporate, community, and faith-based partners, offer a variety of times and locations for you to donate blood.

Make an appointment to donate:
To schedule an appointment or find one of the local blood drives, use the free Blood Donor App, visit, or call 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Blood donors play an integral role in the delivery of modern healthcare. Many life-saving medical treatments and procedures involve blood transfusions and would not be possible without a safe and reliable blood supply. Because of generous donors, the Red Cross is able to provide blood products to patients like 11-year-old Mae Rainey, who needs regular blood transfusions as part of her treatment for a blood disorder.

If you have never donated blood, please consider doing so. If you already donate blood, thank you!  

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