It’s summer, and life has slowed down for many of us. School is out. We’re taking vacations and long weekends. The pace is easier.
But the need for blood donations never changes. People still need transfusions because they’re receiving treatment for cancer, or they’ve been in an accident, or they have a blood ailment such as sickle cell disease.
Donors are needed to keep the steady flow of the A, B and O blood available. In recent years, the American Red Cross blood donor base has been getting smaller. In the past four years, new Red Cross blood donors have decreased by about 80,000 people each year. Furthermore, only three percent of the total population donates blood.
One of the goals of the Red Cross is to add 370,000 new and lapsed donors to the Red Cross donor base during the months of June, July, and August 2018. You can help by taking three simple steps. If you’re able, make an appointment to donate blood this summer. Visit http://www.redcross.org/ to find out more or to find a blood drive close to you. You can schedule a donation appointment this Web site; by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App; or by calling 1-800-Red Cross (1-800-733-2767). You can also recruit family and friends to donate blood. You could even host a blood drive yourself!
RapidPass® is a newer process the American Red Cross is using to make blood donation faster and easier than ever. RapidPass® enables you to complete pre-screening the morning of a donation straight from your smartphone, which reduces wait time one you’re at the donation site. Medical personnel can scan the screening results right from your smartphone or tablet to collect your answers, or you can print the page out and bring it with you for them to scan. After your donation, volunteers will offer you a snack and you’ll relax for a few minutes before you’re on your way. The blood donation process typically takes about an hour to complete.
You may give blood because you want to help others. You may know someone who needed a transfusion, and you want to make sure blood is available for others who need it. By supporting Red Cross blood donation efforts, you help the Red Cross take care of you and your community.