The American Red Cross has declared an emergency need for blood and platelets in the Yakima and Kennewick areas this month. The American Red Cross is partnering with the American Cancer Society this month saying give your time and blood to help make sure people have the strength and support they need to battle cancer.
The pandemic has made it a big challenge for the Red Cross to collect blood. According to the American Cancer Society, many patient visits and procedures were forced to delay or cancel early in the pandemic to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19. After more than a year the Red Cross says it's still seeing fewer blood and platelet donors give as the nation begins to climb out of the pandemic. Red Cross officials say the downturn comes at a time when the Red Cross continues to see strong demand for blood products including platelets by hospitals, causing concerns for blood supplies for this month and the summer months ahead.
Dr. Baia Lasky, Medical Director for the Red Cross says “many cancer patients, especially those going through chemotherapy, will have a need for blood products during treatment." “When someone donates blood or platelets, they may not only help prevent life-threatening bleeding that can cause stroke or relieve some symptoms, like shortness of breath and headaches, but also give patients and their families the time and hope they need to fight back.”
To schedule a blood or platelet donation appointment, visit GiveBloodToGiveTime.org. As a special thank-you, those who come to donate through June 13 will receive a limited-edition Red Cross T-shirt, while supplies last.

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