One of the most important services offered by the American Red Cross is providing lifesaving blood. About 40% of the nation’s blood supply comes from the Red Cross, with one donation being able to potentially save three lives. According to its website, every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood, but less than 38% of the population is eligible to donate. Because of these types of statistics, the need for blood donations is always great. However, it is needed now more than ever.
Due to Coronavirus concerns, blood drives in the country have been canceled at a staggering rate. Moreover, as COVID-19 cases increase, the eligible donor pool decreases. And eligible donors stay home due to an understandable fear of getting sick. All of this has meant hundreds of thousands fewer donations in recent time and concerns about a blood shortage.
Last week, donned with a medical face mask, Lauren Woirol showed up for a blood drive in her community. The Red Cross has implemented strict protocols to protect everyone. Donors were kept at a safe distance and offered masks upon arrival if needed. Temperatures were taken to ensure donors were well and every piece of equipment was sanitized after each use. Volunteers and staff also wore face masks and gloves, which were routinely changed.
Although it was a small act, for Lauren, being able to donate blood felt like one way to help others during these worrisome times. If you are able and feel comfortable, consider making an appointment for a blood drive near you. It could very well save someone’s life. You can also explore other ways to support the efforts of the American Red Cross.