January marks the 52nd anniversary of National Blood Donor Month. Roughly three percent of the U.S. population donates blood each year. A blood transfusion occurs every two seconds in America. National Blood Donor month celebrates those who donate regularly and the lives saved as a result. The winter months are the leanest for donations due to weather and seasonal illnesses.
The nation’s blood supply has dipped to concerning levels and could force hospitals to delay essential blood and platelet transfusions. Blood donors of all blood types – particularly type O, the type hospitals need the most – are needed to meet hospital demands.
Around 5.6 million donations are collected by the Red Cross every year. There are approximately 3.3 million people who donate blood which creates over 8 million trans-fusable blood products. Every year 4.5 million Americans need blood transfusions.
Last year, the Red Cross experienced its first every national blood shortage crisis. While the blood supply has stabilized, the need for blood is constant.
Donors are urged to schedule an appointment with the Red Cross Blood Donor app or call 1 800 red cross.