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Critical Red Cross Blood Shortage
Prompts Emergency Call For Donations

By on July 15, 2017
Give blood or platelets now
and help save lives
(July 5, 2017) –  The American Red Cross is facing a critical blood shortage and is issuing an emergency call for eligible blood and platelet donors of all blood types to give now and help save lives. Blood donations have fallen short of expectations for the past two months, resulting in about 61,000 fewer donations than needed and causing a significant draw down of the Red Cross blood supply. The shortfall is the equivalent of the Red Cross not collecting any blood donations for more than four days. “It’s crucial that people donate now to meet the needs of patients every day and to be prepared for emergencies that require significant volumes of donated blood,” said Alana Mauger, external communications manager for the Penn-Jersey Blood Services Region. “Every day, blood and platelet donors can help save lives, and right now these heroes are needed as soon as possible.”
How to Help
To schedule an appointment to donate, use the free Blood Donor App, visit or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). The Red Cross has added more than 25,000 additional appointment slots at donation centers and community blood drives across the country over the next few weeks to accommodate more donors. Donation appointments and completion of a RapidPassonline health history questionnaire are encouraged to help reduce the time it takes to donate.
Summer Months Lead to Shortage
Blood shortages often worsen around Independence Day due to fewer volunteer-hosted blood drives at places of work, worship or community gathering spaces, and this year is no exception. Nearly 700 fewer blood drives are scheduled during the Independence Day week than the weeks before and after the holiday.
Overall, the summer months are among the most challenging times of the year for blood and platelet donations, as regular donors delay giving while they vacation and participate in summer activities. In a recent survey of Red Cross blood donors, more than 73 percent indicated their vacation plans this summer may impact their ability to donate, with many vacations occurring the weeks before and after Independence Day.
New donors, as well as those who haven’t given in a while, are especially encouraged to roll up a sleeve and help save lives. Nearly one-third fewer new blood donors came out to give last summer than during the rest of the year due, in part, to schools – where many blood drives are held and where new donors often give – being out of session during the summer months.

Who Blood Donations Help
Every two seconds in the United States blood and platelets are needed to respond to patient emergencies, including accident and burn victims, heart surgery and organ transplant procedures, and patients receiving treatment for leukemia, cancer or sickle cell disease. The Red Cross must collect nearly 14,000 blood donations every day for patients at approximately 2,600 hospitals across the country. The Penn-Jersey and Northeastern Pennsylvania Blood Services Regions must collect approximately 1,000 units of blood and platelets every day to meet patient and hospital demand.


Upcoming blood donation opportunities

July 5-25

American Red Cross Blood Donation Center
Northern New Jersey Donor Center
209 Fairfield Road, Fairfield
Tuesday: 12:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Saturday: (1st and 3rd of each month) 7 a.m. – 2 p.m.



7/18/2017: 3 p.m. – 8 p.m., Masonic Lodge, 175 Chestnut St.


Jersey City
7/19/2017: 1:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Hotel, 2 Exchange Place



Long Valley
7/25/2017: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Valley View Chapel, 115 E. Mill Road

7/18/2017: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Madison Volunteer Ambulance Squad, 29 Prospect St.

7/22/2017: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., RTSP-Range, Firearms & Training, 961 Route 10



7/22/2017: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., American Legion Post No. 278, 119 Route 183


About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.