In a recent plea for assistance, the American Red Cross is urging healthy, eligible individuals to give blood or platelets to help maintain a sufficient blood supply and prevent shortages as concerns about the outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019, or COVID-19, rise in the U.S.
Cold and flu season has already impacted the nation’s ability to maintain its blood supply, a recent press release stated. Additionally, as the number of coronavirus cases grows in the U.S., the number of people eligible to give blood for patients in need may possibly decrease further.
Despite there being no evidence that coronavirus can be transmissible by blood transfusion, the Red Cross is approaching the situation cautiously. Individuals wishing to donate are asked to postpone their donation for 28 days following:
Travel to China and its special administrative regions, Hong Kong and Macau, as well as Iran, Italy and South Korea
Diagnosis of COVID-19, contact with a person who has or is suspected to have the virus.
"As the situation evolves, the Red Cross will continue to evaluate all emerging risks in collaboration with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and industry partners to determine if additional intervention strategies are needed. Together, we stand ready to keep the American public informed and prepared,” the press release reads.
Currently, donors with type O blood are needed the most.
Locally, Cheatham residents can give blood at the Livery Stables in Pleasant View located at 1104 Main Street on March 22 from 11 AM to 3 PM.
Please visit RedCrossBlood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) for more information.