Local blood drives announced

The American Red Cross has launched the Missing Types campaign to raise awareness for lifesaving blood donations and urge the public to make an appointment to give blood or platelets this summer.

Upcoming local blood drives include: Tuesday, July 18, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Northwest State Community College, 22-600 State Highway 34, Archbold; Thursday, July 20, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Swanton High School, 601 N. Main St., Swanton.

During the Missing Types campaign, the letters A, B and O – the letters representing the main blood groups – are disappearing from brands, social media pages, signs, and websites to illustrate the critical role blood donors play in helping patients. When A, B, O and AB blood types go missing from hospital shelves, patient care and medical treatments are affected.

Blood transfusion is the fourth most common inpatient hospital procedure in the U.S. Blood can only come from volunteer blood donors, yet only three out of 100 people in the U.S. give blood.

More donors, and new donors in particular, are needed to maintain a sufficient blood supply for patients. Donating blood is a simple process and only takes about an hour from start to finish. Registration requires signing in, showing ID, and reading required information. Then answer questions and receive a mini-physical.

Giving a pint of blood only takes about eight to 10 minutes. RapidPass lets donors complete the pre-donation reading and answer the health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, by visiting RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass from the convenience of a mobile device or computer, or through the Blood Donor App.

Donors can help fill the missing types by making an appointment to give by visiting RedCrossBlood.org/MissingTypes, using the Red Cross Blood Donor App or calling 1-800-733-2767.