American Red Cross asks for blood donations nationwide

Donated blood for patients and hospitals

Donated blood for patients and hospitals

The American Red Cross blames the current blood shortage on winter weather conditions and looks for blood and platelet donors.

Scott said the Red Cross has recently launched an appeal for O-negative and O-positive donors, considered to be the universal donor since O blood can be donated to people with O, A, B and AB blood types.

Erie News Now stopped by to get an update on the critical need that was announced last week. Seasonal illnesses have also impacted blood donations by contributing to more than 28,000 fewer donations than were needed in November and December.

He said you can answer the questionnaire on the app before coming to the blood drive, saving 15 to 20 minutes.

"Donations have dropped really low at this time".

The American Red Cross is searching for volunteers to help during events in the New Jersey region.

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The timing is critical and the need is clear.

"In fact, 38 percent of people in the United States are actually eligible to donate at any given time, so if you can't donate, you're in the majority, and that's part of the reason why we need so many people to donate", he said.

The only requirements to donate blood are a minimum age of 17, good health and a minimum donor weight of 110 pounds. Having blood for emergencies, their hospital partners, cancer patients and burn victims is vital.

While serving local hospitals is the first priority, the Red Cross can move blood products to where they're needed most.

"I would say there's no value on any blood type more than another because they can all be used for different things", Edsall said.

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