By MJ Kneiser, WLHR Radio, Lavonia
The American Red Cross in Northeast Georgia is putting out an emergency call for donations of blood and blood platelets.
Nationwide, donations through the Red Cross were down approximately 10 percent in June, resulting in about 50,000 fewer donations than expected.
American Red Cross spokesperson Kristen Stancil said this time of year is especially tough for hospitals and medical facilities because donations tend to be lower.
“What we typically see this time of year is a decline in donations,” said Stancil.
“It is really important for people to remember that donations of blood do not take a holiday in the summer months. There is still a need for blood; there is a still a need for platelets. People are still depending on your donations to save their lives.”
Blood can be safely donated every 56 days and platelets can be given safely every two weeks, up to 24 times a year.
Most healthy people age 17 and older, or age 16 with parental consent, who weigh at least 110 pounds, are eligible to donate blood and platelets.
Donors who are 18 and younger must also meet specific height and weight requirements.
To get more information on ways to donate blood or platelets, you can visit the Red Cross web site at www.redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED-CROSS.