WASHINGTON, D.C. — A sharp decline in blood donors this summer has triggered a national blood shortage, prompting an urgent plea from the American Red Cross.
As of Sept. 11, the nation’s blood supply dwindled by nearly 25% since early August. In response to the Red Cross’s call for help, donors have stepped up, but the supply remains critically low.
Factors like a record-breaking travel season, school re-openings, and consecutive months of climate-induced disasters have hindered donation rates. Experts now warn of a strenuous fall disaster season, which could further strain the Red Cross’s ability to meet hospital demands.
The impact of this shortage is broad. Every two seconds, someone in the U.S. requires blood. Patients, ranging from those with sickle cell disease to those undergoing cancer treatments, heavily depend on these blood products.
To combat this, the Red Cross is incentivizing donors. Those who donate in September stand a chance to win a VIP NASCAR experience and will also receive a free haircut coupon from Sport Clips Haircuts. Donors can schedule appointments via the Red Cross Blood App, RedCrossBlood.org, or by calling 1-800-RED CROSS.
The American Red Cross, responsible for 40% of the nation’s blood supply, plays a vital role in disaster relief and medical aid. The organization relies heavily on volunteers and public generosity. For more information or to donate, visit redcross.org or follow @RedCross on Twitter.