Donating blood is easy.
It doesn’t cost anything. It doesn’t take too much time. And it could save someone else’s life.
Given that, why not donate?
The American Red Cross has put out an emergency call for blood donations because supplies are short just about everywhere. The nonprofit reported recently that it had 50,000 fewer donations than expected in June, leaving it with just half of the supplies it had at this time last year.
There are several reasons for this year’s shortage, but the only thing that really matters is that there is, in fact, a significant shortage.
The Red Cross must collect an average of more than 17,000 pints of blood a day to serve patients at more than 3,000 hospitals and transfusion centers across the country. For the region that serves DeKalb County, about 500 pints a day must be collected.
Consider these important facts from the American Red Cross:
• Every two seconds, someone in the United States needs blood.
• Only 5 percent of the U.S. population gives blood in a given year.
• Because blood is perishable, new donations are needed every day.
• A single-car accident victim can require as many as 100 units of blood.
Locally, there are a few opportunities this month for those who want to help. Three blood drives are scheduled in the area:
• Today from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Kishwaukee College, Route 38 and Malta Road in Malta.
• July 21 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Northern Open MRI, 1955 DeKalb Ave. in Sycamore.
• July 29 from 8 a.m. to noon at St. Catherine Church, 340 S. Stott St. in Genoa.
For information about these blood drives, call 815-758-7268.
Anyone older than 16 may donate. Those who are 16 need parental permission. Bring a blood donor card or driver’s license. People have to be symptom-free of cold, flu or allergies, and be in good health.
Please consider donating. You could save a life.