Red Cross Urges Blood Donations to Help Trauma Patients
May is Trauma Awareness Month and the American Red Cross is urging donors to give blood or platelets to help trauma patients and others, and to help keep blood supplies stocked up so that trauma centers are prepared.
Ronnika McFall with Red Cross Communications, describes the need.
"Each year trauma accounts for 41-million emergency department visits and two million hospitals across the nation, according to the National Trauma Institute,” according to Mcfall. “That’s why the Red Cross must collect more than 13-thousand blood and platelet donations every day for patient needs.”
Mc Fall says summer and winter pose challenges when it comes to collecting blood supplies since may regular donors are unavailable due to vacations, activities and inclement weather. But she says, the need for blood is constant.
Blood is a perishable product, with a shelf-life of only 42 days, platelets have a shelf-life of 5 days. So the blood supply must constantly be replenished.
“Blood is a perishable product, with a shelf-life of only 42 days, platelets have a shelf-life of 5 days. So the blood supply must constantly be replenished.”
The agency requires to collect 13,000 donations daily to meet the need.
“Type O negative is the universal blood type, and what trauma personnel reach for in an emergency when there isn’t time to determine that patient’s blood type. It’s always in demand and often in short supply.”
Appointments to give can be made by using the Red Cross blood donor app, visiting Red Cross blood.org, or calling 1-800-Red-Cross (1-800-733-2767).