Red Cross worried about ‘concerning’ blood donation shortfall

Have any plans for this upcoming weekend? The American Red Cross is encouraging those eligible to donate blood soon, in light of a “concerning donation shortfall” over recent weeks.

As the Fourth of July weekend approaches, the Red Cross has seen a downward trend in donations that may worsen during the holiday. 

“The upcoming holiday could put a further strain on donations, as millions celebrate with family vacations and other seasonal activities,” the Red Cross wrote in a statement. 

The Red Cross supplies about 40% of the nation’s blood, and—according to the organization—someone in the U.S. needs blood or platelets every two seconds.

“Donors of all blood types, especially those with type B negative or O negative blood as well as platelet donors, are needed to make an appointment to give now to ensure blood remains available for patients this summer,” the release stated. 

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In order to donate blood, you must:

  • Have a blood donor card, driver’s license, or two other forms of identification for check-in
  • Be above 17 years old (or 16 with parental consent, by state law)
  • Weigh at least 110 pounds and be in generally good health

“It takes less time to donate blood than to watch a classic summer camp movie,” their website reads. “Remember those nostalgic story lines with the thrill of adventure, new friendships and the great outdoors? Channel that excitement and those I-can-do-anything feelings to help save lives: Kick off summer with a blood, platelet or plasma donation!”

To encourage donations, the Red Cross will be giving out prizes to those who give blood in the next few weeks:

Anyone who donates blood, platelets or plasma through June 30 will receive a $10 gift card to a merchant of their choice. They will also automatically be entered for a backyard theater package, which includes a laser wireless projector and screen, projector tripod, smokeless fire pit, Adirondack chair set with four chairs and two tables and a movie night snack package, according to the website.

Those donating between July 1-11 will receive an exclusive Red Cross dry bag.

To schedule an appointment to donate, download the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).


by Grace Katzer

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