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Red Cross urges eligible donors to close out summer with blood or platelet donation

AMERICUS — The American Red Cross urges eligible donors to end summer on a positive and potentially lifesaving note with a blood or platelet donation this Labor Day holiday.
In early August, the Red Cross issued an urgent call for blood donors with types O negative, B negative and A negative blood to donate to help avert an emergency situation. Thousands of people have answered the call to donate in recent weeks, but blood and platelet donors are still needed to help ensure blood products are available to meet hospital patient needs.
“The Red Cross appreciates all those who have made it a priority to give this summer. Between back-to-school planning and end-of-summer activities, this time of year can be an especially difficult time to collect blood,” said Mario Sedlock, director of donor recruitment for the Red Cross Alabama and Central Gulf Coast and Southern Blood Services Regions. “The Red Cross Southern Blood Services Region needs to collect more than 200 blood donations this Labor Day weekend. Eligible donors are encouraged to make an appointment to give blood or platelets.”
Blood donors with all types, especially O negative, B negative and A negative, are urged to give. Platelet donors and those with type AB blood are also continually needed. To encourage donations during Labor Day weekend, those who come to donate from Saturday through Monday will receive a limited-edition Red Cross T-shirt, while supplies last.
Those who donated blood earlier this summer may be eligible to donate again. Blood can be safely donated every 56 days and platelets can be given every seven days — up to 24 times a year. To make an appointment, download the free Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

How to donate blood
Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental consent in some states), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.