Typically hosting three or four blood drives at the Southwick Town Hall each year, the American Red Cross is in dire need of people in the community to come out and donate blood. According to Kelly Isenor, the External Communications Manager for the American Red Cross, there is a high demand for Type O negative blood. Known as the “universal donor” blood type, O negative can be used on a patient of any blood type.
The American Red Cross wants to remind people that there’s a need for all blood types.
“Right now, blood products are going out to hospitals faster than donations are coming in to replace them,” said Isenor. “At this point, the (American) Red Cross has approximately a three-day supply on hand nationwide to meet the needs of hospital partners. A five-day supply is ideal, which is why we are considering this an emergency need.”
Isenor continued to stress the importance of people donating blood and staying persistent with it.
“There is no substitute for human blood, and it cannot be made in a lab. It must come from donors, which is why the Red Cross encourages anyone who is able to make an appointment and donate,” said Isenor. “Whole blood donors are eligible again after just 56 days, so it is possible to donate blood as many as six times every calendar year.”
If anyone is interested in donating at the blood drive at the Southwick Town Hall on February 25, they can sign up by calling 1-800-733-2767 or visit redcrossblood.org. Although making appointments is preferred, people are also welcome to walk in at the event and donate blood.