BLOOD IS a precious commodity. It is a staple of life.
Unfortunately, the brutal and unrelenting winter weather that has its icy grip on the Ohio Valley is creating problems for the American Red Cross. So much so, local blood supplies are at a dangerously low level.
The snow, ice and frigid temperatures have forced the ARC to cancel nearly 800 blood drives nationwide in January alone. That amounts to a massive amount of blood not being collected and utilized for life-saving purposes. As much as 25,000 blood and platelet donations have gone uncollected.
In our area, 40 blood drives have been postponed. If staged as scheduled, they would have yielded as much as 1,000 donations.
The nasty weathers continues as does the need for blood.
The Red Cross has an urgent need for donors with O positive, O negative, A negative and B negative blood types, but donors of other types are encouraged to make an appointment and donate as well.
Blood donations made in the Ohio Valley go directly to our local hospitals. Thus, making a donation directly affects the people of the Ohio Valley who require blood transfusions.
To make an appointment with the American Red Cross, donors can call 1-800-RED-CROSS or visit www.redcrossblood.org. The website will provide everything donors need to know, including driving directions, based on the ZIP code they enter.
Local donors are encouraged to make an appointment at one of the following drives:
- Feb. 24, March 3 and March 10 at OVMC in Wheeling;
- Feb. 26 at Wheeling Jesuit University;
- March 4 at St. Clairsville High School;
- March 6 at Belmont Career Center in St. Clairsville.
Check www.redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED-CROSS for a full list of upcoming local drives.
We urge those medically able to donate blood as soon as possible. It may save a life of a loved one.