CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The American Red Cross is making an appeal for blood donations in order to have an adequate supply for meeting emergencies.
January is National Blood Donor Month with a winter blood drive in the works.
Blood donations are generally low during the hectic holiday season when other commitments make it difficult for donors to schedule appointments, said Cheryl Gergely, communications manager for the Greater Alleghenies Blood Services Region.
"We always need blood drives this time of year and any time," Gergely said. "During the holidays blood donations decline because people get busy with other activities and it is not as much of a priority. The need for blood does not take a holiday."
The American Red Cross is holding its "Give Something That Means Something" winter campaign. The campaign is geared to encourage eligible donors to give something meaningful during the holiday season by donating blood or platelets for hospital patients in need.
Every two seconds someone in the United States needs blood and the Red Cross must collect 15,000 pints a day to meet the needs of patients at 1,700 hospitals and transfusion centers across the country. Blood donations are used to treat cancer patients, trauma victims, premature babies and those living with chronic blood disorders.
While all types of blood are needed, the types especially needed right now include O negative, A negative, and B negative, Gergely said.