According to the Red Cross, severe winter weather has had a tremendous impact on blood donations.
In North Carolina alone, 23 blood drives were cancelled or closed early due to last week's winter storm, with almost 600 uncollected donations.
"Right now, blood donations are being distributed to hospitals as fast as they come in", said Natividad Lewis, a Portland-based spokeswoman for the Red Cross. Accident and burn victims, heart surgery and organ transplant patients, and patients receiving treatment for leukemia, cancer or sickle cell disease may all require blood to help save their lives. Blood Systems is one of the nation's oldest and largest nonprofit community blood service providers, now serving more than 1,000 hospital and health care partners across 28 states to provide comprehensive transfusion medicine services for patients in need. "Sometimes they'll send a friend or family member in their spot to donate so we don't lose that blood product". RapidPass lets donors complete the pre-donation reading and answer the health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, by visiting redcrossblood.org/rapidpass from the convenience of a mobile device or computer, or through the Blood Donor App.
Types O negative and O positive blood are the most important due to their universal tendencies, the press release said.
"Hospitals don't take snow days, and neither do we", said Dawn Kaiser, director of donor services for Michigan Blood.
Eligible donors must be in good health, at least 17 years old and weigh at least 115 pounds.
Type B negative: The blood type that can be transfused to type B Rh-positive and negative patients. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission.
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