The American Red Cross urges donors to shake up their holiday traditions and plan a time to give blood in the coming weeks.
Blood and platelet donations tend to drop more than 20% during holiday weeks. Seasonal illness and the threat of winter weather can add more concern during a time of year that is traditionally hard on the nation’s blood supply.
In the U.S., blood shortages — like the blood crisis last winter — often capture national attention as a dire risk to patient care. Whether or not there’s a shortage that makes headlines this winter, one in seven patients entering a hospital will need a blood transfusion.
Give thanks and give back – now is the time to make and keep donation appointments. Book a time to give blood at RedCrossBlood.org. Thanks to our partners at Amazon, all donors who come to give blood November 28 – December 15 will receive a $10 Gift card by email.*
How to donate blood
Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enable the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass® to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.
Upcoming blood drives
•Hokah: December 7 from 1-6 p.m., Fire Station, 9 Mill St.
•La Crescent: December 8 from 12-6 p.m., Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, 21 N Hill St.
•Grand Meadow: December 12 from 1:30-6:30 p.m., Emergency Service Building, 200 2nd St. SE
•Rushford: December 13 from 12-6 p.m., MiEnergy Cooperative, 31110 Cooperative Way
•Mabel: December 14 from 12-6 p.m., American Legion, 114 N Main St.
•LeRoy: December 15 from 1-7 p.m., Community Center, 204 W Main St.
Amplify Your impact
Another way to support the lifesaving mission of the Red Cross is to become a volunteer blood donor ambassador at Red Cross blood drives. Blood donor ambassadors help greet, check-in and thank blood donors to ensure they have a positive donation experience.
Volunteers can also serve as transportation specialists, playing a vital role in ensuring lifesaving blood products are delivered to nearby hospitals. For more information and to apply for either position, visit redcross.org/givetime.
About the American
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides comfort to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; distributes international humanitarian aid; and supports veterans, military members and their families. The Red Cross is a nonprofit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to deliver its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or CruzRojaAmericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.