Flu season may impact Red Cross blood supply
The American Red Cross urges blood and platelet donors to give now and help fight the potential impact of seasonal illnesses and a potentially severe flu season on the blood supply.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention predicts a serious spread of flu this year and is already reporting an early spike in cases in several states. When seasonal illnesses increase, the number of healthy donors tends to decrease, leaving the Red Cross blood supply vulnerable to a potential shortage over the holidays.
Paired with busy holiday schedules, seasonal illnesses may make it harder to collect the blood hospital patients require this winter. Donors — especially those with type O blood and those giving platelets − can help bolster the blood supply now by making an appointment to give in the coming weeks.
There is no waiting period to donate blood or platelets after receiving a flu shot. Schedule an appointment by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). Learn more about flu safety and prevention at redcross.org/flusafety.
As a thank-you, the Red Cross is offering several opportunities to donors this month. All who come to give through Nov. 22 will receive a $10 e-gift card to a merchant of choice. Details are available at rcblood.org/perks. Those who come to give over the Thanksgiving holiday, Nov. 23–27, will get a Red Cross knit beanie, while supplies last. All who come out to help Nov. 28–Dec. 15 will receive a $10 Amazon.com Gift Card by email, thanks to Amazon. Details are available at rcblood.org/together.
Upcoming blood donation opportunities are listed below.
Nov. 18, 1 p.m. – 5 p.m., St. Marys Parish Center Carlyle, 1171 Jefferson Street, Carlyle.
Nov. 21, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., Civic Center, 100 East Birch Street, New Baden.
Nov. 22, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., American Legion Hall, 391 Louis Street, Beckemeyer.w
Nov. 23, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., American Legion Hall, 575 North Main Street, Breese.
Nov. 17, 2 p.m. – 6 p.m., Ramsey Grade School, 702 West 6th Street. Ramsey.
Nov. 22, 1:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Dutch Prairie Community, 983 N 1300th St., Shobonier.
Nov. 18, 1 p.m. – 5 p.m., West Salem Trinity United Methodist Church, 4212 Broadway, Mt. Vernon.
Nov. 21, 9:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m., Rend Lake College, 468 North Kengray Parkway, Ina.
Nov. 21, 1 p.m. – 5 p.m., Free Will Baptist Church, 3rd and Elm Street, Ina.
Nov. 28 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., Rolland Lewis Community Building, South 27th Street, Mt. Vernon.
Nov. 28, 2 p.m. – 6 p.m., Summersville Baptist Church, 1114 Fairfield Road, Mt. Vernon.
Nov. 17, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., St. Barbara Parish, 305 North Front Street, PO Box 106, Okawville.
Nov. 30, 1 p.m. – 5 p.m., Ashley Community Building, 660 East Main Street, Ashley.