The American Red Cross estimations show that every two seconds one American needs a blood transfusion.
At least 2,600 hospitals and transfusion centers in the US are in a desperate need of blood.
The United Blood Services is asking the public to make a donation in order to respond to this increased demand. The summer months can be difficult for blood transfusion units as people are busy or away on holidays.
The World Blood Donor event will take place on Tuesday. The aim of the event is to raise awareness on the importance of blood donations and to thank regular donors for their voluntary offerings.
The United Blood association encourages both new and past donors to help them with the increased blood demand over the summer months. In order to donate, a person would need to present at the check-in a blood donor card, a driver’s license or two other types of ID documents.
As the American Red Cross needs to collect 14,000 blood donations every day to meet the need, every person that satisfies the conditions is asked to step up and help saving lives.
Eligible individuals must be over the age of 17 and have at least 110 pounds. Also, their general health condition should be satisfactory. The Red Cross has made available on its website a health history questionnaire and the pre-donation reading.
Blood can be preserved for no more than 42 days. Thus, there is a constant need of blood supply in hospitals. Platelets can be maintained only for seven days, while plasma can be kept frozen for one year.
The short shelf life does not permit emergency units to store and keep blood that would be needed to help in the case of a disaster. The issue became a significant problem after the September 11 attacks.
As part of the World Blood Donor Day event, Red Cross also will offer a collection of bandages in a limited edition that will have the theme “Feel the Beat, Give Blood”. The bandages will have designs inspired by cultures around the world.
The spokesperson chosen for the America’s World Donor Day will be the supermodel Niki Taylor, who also has a personal example of how blood donors can save a life.
For more information on eligibility and the program of the World Donor Day, the Red Cross made available an app that can be downloaded from their official website.