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The American Red Cross has issued an urgent appeal for blood and platelet donors.

Donors of all blood types, especially those with types O negative, B negative and A negative, are urgently needed.

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“The American Red Cross is facing a looming blood shortage, leading to an urgent need for donors of all blood types to roll up a sleeve and give,” said Joe Condor, with the Red Cross.

Condor said donations through the Red Cross are down approximately 8 percent over the last 11 weeks, resulting in about 80,000 fewer donations than expected.

“The shortfall in donations is significant enough that the Red Cross could experience an emergency shortage in the coming weeks,” said Condor. “Please make an appointment to give now to help replenish the blood supply.”

Eligible blood and platelet donors are urged to roll up a sleeve and give to help prevent an emergency shortage and ensure an adequate blood supply for patients. The need for blood donors with types O negative, B negative and A negative is especially urgent.

Patients don’t get a summer vacation from needing blood. The Red Cross encourages donors to make an appointment now to help ensure a stable supply in the weeks ahead.

If donors cannot keep a scheduled appointment, encourage them to visitredcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to find another donation opportunity.