Red Cross enters third week of emergency blood shortage

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LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – MARCH 27: American Red Cross employee Darryl Thompson Jr. takes blood from Ken Muller of Nevada during an American Red Cross blood drive to help alleviate a blood supply shortage as a result of the coronavirus pandemic at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on March 27, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The speedway plans to hold a total of four blood drives due to a lack of donated blood and facilities large enough to collect it while observing social distancing guidelines. Many blood drives across the United States have been canceled as a result of the spread of the virus. The World Health Organization declared the coronavirus (COVID-19) a global pandemic on March 11th. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

INDIANAPOLIS — The American Red Cross continues to experience their emergency blood shortage, causing their blood supply to drop to the lowest post-summer level in at least six years.

According to a press release from the Red Cross, fall is typically a time when the blood supply rebounds from summer blood shortages, but a surge in COVID-19 cases, especially those due to the delta variant, turned this into the lowest donor turnout of the year. In recent weeks, there is less than a day’s supply of certain blood types.

In order to recoup their inventory, the Red Cross must collect 10,000 additional blood products each week during this month in order to meet hospital and patient needs. They ask donors of all blood types (especially type O) to make an appointment to give blood as soon as possible.

Those who donate during Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October will receive a link in their email to claim a free Zaxby’s Signature Sandwich reward or get a free $5 e-gift card to a merchant of their choice. Those who donate between October 11-31 will receive a bonus $5 e-gift card to a merchant of their choice. The Red Cross is urging donors to remember the importance of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, especially since 25 percent of their blood supply is used by cancer patients during chemotherapy, surgery and other treatments.

Those who wish to donate blood may schedule an appointment using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting their website, or calling 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

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