|Donations through the Red Cross are down approximately eight percent over the last 11 weeks, resulting in about 80,000 fewer donations than expected nationwide. The number of donors continues to decline, and the shortfall is significant enough that the Red Cross could experience an emergency situation in the coming weeks.
Eligible donors with types O negative, B negative and A negative blood are especially needed at this time. Type O negative is the universal blood type and can be transfused to anyone who needs blood. Types A negative and B negative can be transfused to Rh positive or negative patients.
There is also an urgent need for platelet donations. Platelets Ė a key clotting component of blood often needed by cancer patients, burn victims and bone marrow recipients Ė must be transfused within five days of donation, so itís important to have a steady supply of platelets on hand.
Blood drives will take place in Newton County on August 2, 2014, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Abundant Life Church, 700 Spencer Dr., Neosho; in Jasper County on August 6, 2014, from 1:30-5:30 p.m. at the Red Cross S.W. MO Chapter, 410 S. Jackson, Joplin and on August 14, 2014, from 1-6 p.m. at the Church of the Nazarene, 2000 Grand, Carthage.
Call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit here to make an appointment or for more information. A blood donor card or driverís license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age, weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements and have parental consent.