By Doug Bardwell, Red Cross Volunteer
Last month the blood supply was in “crisis.” This month it’s rated “vulnerable.” Neither of those are optimal – the latter being only incrementally better. Bottom line = we still need everyone to donate if they are able.
With relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions, doctors are once again allowing elective surgery. Don’t associate “elective” with just things as tummy tucks and facelifts.
Elective means it can be scheduled in advance instead of being scheduled as an emergency. Some heart surgeries, including bypass and valve surgeries, as well as some cancer surgeries or biopsies are scheduled electively. When elective surgeries are delayed for too long, life-threatening emergencies can occur.
Since issuing its first-ever blood crisis alert, severe winter weather has further complicated efforts to rebuild the Red Cross blood supply. So far in 2022, approximately 600 blood drives have been canceled across the country due to winter storms, forcing nearly 20,000 blood and platelet donations to go uncollected.
Don’t let the supply go back to “crisis” mode – make and keep those appointments. It’s quick and easy to find a location and time near you at redcrossblood.org.
If you have either type O positive or O negative – you are needed most urgently:
o Type O positive is the most transfused blood type and can be transfused to Rh-positive patients of any blood type.
o Type O negative is the universal blood type and what emergency room personnel reach for when there is no time to determine the blood type of patients in the most serious situations.
Platelet donations are also urgently needed. Platelets are the clotting portion of blood, which must be transfused within five days of donation. Nearly half of all platelet donations are given to patients undergoing cancer treatments.
Need more motivation???
For drives March 1-31: All who come to give blood or platelets will get a $10 e-gift card, thanks to Fanatics, world’s largest collection of officially licensed sports gear.
Plus, donors will also automatically be entered for a chance to win a trip for two to the 2022 MLB® All-Star Game® in Los Angeles, California, when you come to give March 1-31. The package includes two tickets to 2022 MLB® All-Star Saturday, the 2022 Home Run Derby and the 2022 MLB® All-Star Game®, round-trip airfare to Los Angeles, four-night hotel accommodations (July 16-20, 2022), plus a $750 gift card for expenses. Details available at rcblood.org/team.
Edited by Glenda Bogar, American Red Cross volunteer