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Red Cross asking for needed blood

Following the bad weather felt across the country in the past week, blood supplies have decreased to drastically low amounts in the Alabama and Central Gulf Coast Region, which encompasses the Selma area. The region, and the nation, has low amounts of type O negative, a universal donation type, and type B negative, a rare blood type.

“We see decreased collections this time of year traditionally,” said Mr. Evan Duffy, communications manager for the American Red Cross. “But a lot of our donors were not able to get out recently. That means a slight pinch in out donations.”

Just for this region, the Red Cross needs 600 people to donate each day to sufficiently supply the current daily demands. Nationally, 3,600 people need to donate each day. “Every two seconds, someone in the United States needs blood,” Mr. Duffy said.

To donate blood, visit an upcoming drive or search at redcrossblood.org to find a donation time and place. Upcoming drives in Selma are on Jan. 19 on Broad Street in the blood mobile from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and on Jan. 21 at Easter Seals at 2906 Citizens Parkway from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Donors can safely give blood every 56 days. Those willing to donate must be at least 17 years of age, or 16 with parental consent, and weigh at least 110 pounds and be in good health. Make sure to bring a driver’s license or Red Cross donor card.