Give Blood to the American Red Cross – Information Below on How & Where
GIVE BLOOD, HELP PATIENTS DURING SICKLE CELL AWARENESS MONTH
News Release from American Red Cross – Cascades Region
September 19th, 2023
One in 3 African American blood donors is a match for people with sickle cell disease
Portland, Ore. (Sept. 19, 2023) — During Sickle Cell Awareness Month in September, the American Red Cross emphasizes the importance of a diverse blood supply to help meet the needs of those with sickle cell disease – the most common inherited blood disorder in the U.S.
In the U.S. sickle cell disease impacts more than 100,000 people, most of whom are of African descent. Regular blood transfusions are critical to managing extreme pain and life-threatening complications faced by many. One in 3 African American blood donors is a match for people with sickle cell disease.
By making a blood donation this fall, donors can help those with sickle cell manage their symptoms and feel the support of their community. Book a time to give blood by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
Jarvez Hall, of Portland, Oregon, lost his mother to sickle cell disease in 1999. He says, “Give blood and give again. When you’re tired of giving, give one more time and then another time after that.”
Health insights for donors
It is estimated that about 1 in 13 Black or African American babies in the U.S. is born with sickle cell trait, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Many individuals are unaware they carry this trait. To provide a valuable health insight to donors, the Red Cross currently tests all donations from those who self-identify as either multiracial or Black or African American for sickle cell trait. Health experts recommend that individuals with sickle cell trait be aware of their status and consult their medical provider on what it means for them.
How to donate blood
To make an appointment, simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enable the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device to make an appointment or for more information. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides comfort to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation’s blood and is the primary blood supplier to 65 hospitals throughout Washington and Oregon; teaches skills that save lives; distributes international humanitarian aid; and supports veterans, military members and their families. The Red Cross is a nonprofit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to deliver its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org/Oregon or CruzRojaAmericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCrossCasc.