American Red Cross faces blood shortage due to cancellations

Alayna Ross

The American Red Cross is facing a severe blood shortage and healthy donors are urged to donate blood, platelets or AB plasma.

Due to the coronavirus outbreak, the American Red Cross has been faced with an unparalleled amount of blood drive cancellations. Without blood donations, blood supplies are diminishing rapidly which can have a severe impact on patients who need surgery, victims of car accidents and other emergencies, or patients fighting cancer.

The American Red Cross is encouraging healthy individuals to donate in order to help patients counting on lifesaving blood, platelets or AB Elite plasma.

The government has prompted citizens to leave home only for necessities such as health care, groceries or blood product donation. According to a statement made by the United States Surgeon General, blood donations are safe and encouraged.

“You can still go out and give blood and we’re worried about potential blood shortages in the future,” the United States Surgeon General said in a recent press conference.

According to the Red Cross, donating blood is a safe process and people should not hesitate to give. Additionally, beds are being spaced, where possible, to follow social distancing practices between blood donors and are looking at spacing donor appointments further apart to decrease the number of people at a blood drive at any one time.

At this time, there is no test to screen blood donations for the coronavirus and there is no data or evidence that COID-19 can be transmitted by blood transfusions.

Those interested in donating blood should visit or call 1-800­-RED CROSS to schedule an appointment.