Red Cross Asking For Blood Donations to Avoid a Summer Shortage - KHGI-TV/KWNB-TV/KHGI-CD-Grand Island, Kearney, Hastings

Red Cross Asking For Blood Donations to Avoid a Summer Shortage

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Hastings, NE - The American Red Cross is asking for your help to keep their blood supply from getting dangerously low.

It's a plea they make every year, but they say, that doesn't make it any less important.

No matter the season, Tom Artz said he makes the time to give blood.

"I'm a pharmacist and I know how important it is to give blood,” said the Hastings resident. “It's just something I can do."

Artz was donating at a drive at Hastings’ First Congregational Church Thursday.

But, Red Cross officials say more chairs are empty during the summer months.

"We're seeing fewer blood donors at our collection sites this summer than what we need to maintain enough blood and platelets for our patients in need," said Andrea Carey, collections team supervisor.

Typically they see their biggest drop this week surrounding the Independence Day holiday when many are traveling.

"Unfortunately, patients don't get vacation from needing the blood and platelets, so the need is constant," said Carey.

To avoid a summer shortage, the Red Cross is urging you to "choose your day" to donate out of the 100 between Memorial and Labor Days.

In the time it takes you to watch an average baseball game, officials say you could donate blood three times and help save nine lives.

"We especially need O-, B- and A- blood types," said Carey.

Artz won't be eligible to give blood again before summer's end, but he urges you to.

"It doesn't take too long," he said.

Red Cross staff said opportunities to give may be scarce over the holiday.

There is one drive at Kearney’s Red Cross on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Come Monday, they'll need more donors.

Just call 1-800-RED-CROSS or go to redcrossblood.org to sign up.
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