Red Cross urgently needs blood donations

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According to the Red Cross, severe winter weather has had a tremendous impact on blood donations.

More than 150 drives were canceled across the country, including 10 in NY just last week.

While serving local hospitals is the first priority, the Red Cross can move blood products to where they're needed most.

Eligible individuals are urged to schedule a blood or platelet donation today by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-REDCROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Donation appointments and completion of a RapidPass are encouraged to help speed up the donation process. She says during November and December the Red Cross was short 28,000 donors from normal levels. Any healthy person 17 or older (or 16 with parental consent) may be eligible to donate, although there are height and weight restrictions for people 16 to 18 years old.

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"A lot of donors were deterred due to illness", Franklin said. O-negative, the universal blood type that's always in high demand, can be given to patients of any blood type.

Donors of all blood types are needed.

"Thank you to those wonderful people from the Ipswich community who rolled up their sleeves and gave blood during the festive season, because your gift has helped to save lives", she said.

The American Red Cross's supply is running lower than usual.

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