Red Cross: Blood Donations Needed to Help Communities Affected by Hurricane Sandy
Red Cross urges blood donations in unaffected areas across the country as emergency responders assess damage from Hurricane Sandy.
Editor's note: This article was submitted by the Great Lakes Michigan Blood Services Region of the American Red Cross.
Hurricane Sandy has forced the cancellation of approximately 300 American Red Cross blood drives in 14 states along the East Coast, resulting in a shortfall of more than 9,000 units of blood and platelet donations.
The Red Cross has moved blood products to the areas most likely to be affected by Sandy so these products will be available during and after the storm.
“The Red Cross is urging immediate blood and platelet donations in areas unaffected by this storm,” said Todd Kulman, Communications Program Manager for the Great Lakes Blood Services Region of the American Red Cross. “It’s the blood that is already on the shelves that helps save lives before, during and after a disaster.”
The storm has the potential to cause power outages and flooding in many areas along the East Coast, which will most likely result in the cancellation of additional blood drives and platelet donations throughout the week. While Sandy will affect the number of people available to donate, hospital patients still need blood and platelets despite the weather.
Nationwide, around 44,000 blood donations are needed every day to meet the needs of accident victims, cancer patients, and children with blood disorders. If collections are negatively impacted by a disaster, the long-term needs of these patients could also be affected.
All blood types are needed to ensure an adequate blood supply is available during a disaster, especially type O positive, O negative, A negative or B negative blood.
Call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit redcrossblood.org to make an appointment or for more information. Platelet donors should call 313-494-2788 to schedule an appointment.
A blood donor card or driver’s license, or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 (16 with parental permission in Michigan), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors age 18 and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
How to Help
The Red Cross has mobilized disaster volunteers and is providing safe shelter from Hurricane Sandy to thousands of people in the storm’s path. The Red Cross is working closely with federal, state and local government officials, as well as community partners to coordinate response efforts.
Donations are needed to help with the disaster response in New Jersey, New York, and states across the east coast. Donations enable the Red Cross to prepare for and provide shelter, food, emotional support and other assistance in response to disasters. Visit redcross.org, call 1-800-RED-CROSS, or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
Contributions may also be sent to American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, DC 20013.
Upcoming Blood Drives
|Oct. 31||11:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.||Livingston County American Red Cross 1372 W. Grand River Ave Howell, MI 48843|
|Nov. 1||12:15-6:15 p.m.||Brighton VFW Post 4357 10590 E. Grand River|
|Nov 3.||9 a.m.-3 p.m.||Shepherd of the Lakes Lutheran Church 2101 South Hacker|
|Nov. 3||10:15 a.m.-4 p.m.||Shalom Lutheran Church 1740 East M-36
|Nov. 13||12-6 p.m.||Cornerstone Evangelical Presbyterian Church 9455 Hilton Rd|
|Nov. 17||10 a.m.-4 p.m.||St Patrick Parish Life Center 710 Rickett Rd|