Red Cross blood drive coming Sept. 17

This September, the American Red Cross invites you to do something amazing — help save lives by donating blood.

Blood donations historically drop during the summer months, and blood supply levels can become critically low following the Labor Day weekend. Blood has a limited shelf-life. Red blood cells, the portion of blood most commonly used for trauma patients, are only good for 42 days, and platelets, commonly used for cancer patients, are only good for five days. The Red Cross announced that increased blood and platelet donations during September are needed to ensure an adequate and continuous supply of blood and blood products for local hospitals.

The demand for blood has increased in past years because of a growing population, an aging population requiring more medical care, and increasingly sophisticated medical procedures that improve health care but also require blood transfusions. Meanwhile, blood donations routinely drop during the summer months when high schools and colleges are out of session.

The Red Cross offers a special thank you to all the caring people who took time from their busy schedules this summer to help save lives. Now we encourage everyone to make an appointment to donate blood or platelets during September and the coming months. Your donation can help make a difference to a loved one, a friend or a stranger — and that is an amazing thing.

All eligible donors are asked to schedule an appointment to donate blood sponsored by the Knights of Columbus at the Hood River Armory on Thursday, Sept. 17 from 1-6 p.m. by calling Margo Parker at 541-387-3669, or schedule online at www.redcrossblood.org (sponsor code: HoodRiver).

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