American Red Cross presents 3 reasons to donate blood in February

One in seven patients entering a hospital will need a blood transfusion, according to the American Red Cross.

At the same time, only about 3% of Americans give blood. The American Red Cross needs more people to make and keep appointments to give blood or platelets in February and has three great reasons to do so:

• Help prevent a blood shortage: Winter brings seasonal illness and dangerous weather, which can hurt the blood supply. When donors give now, they can help ensure blood is on hospital shelves when it’s needed.

• It’s Heart Month: During a blood donation appointment, the Red Cross checks donors’ blood pressure and pulse, which are important indicators of heart health.

• Treat yourself: All who come to give in February will get a $10 Amazon.com Gift Card by email, thanks to Amazon. Those who come to donate this month will also automatically be entered to win a trip for two to Clearwater Beach, Florida. Details are available at RedCrossBlood.org/heart.

Donors of all blood types – particularly type O blood donors, the most needed blood group by hospitals – are needed daily to meet demand. Protect the blood supply from dropping – book a time to give blood by visiting RedCrossBlood.org, downloading the Red Cross Blood Donor App, or calling 1-800-RED CROSS.

There are two pcoming blood donation opportunities in Stanly County:

• 2-6:30 p.m. Feb. 21, Community Full Gospel Church, 12547 U.S. Highway 52, Norwood; and

• 2:30-6:30 p.m. Feb. 28, Locust Presbyterian Church, 607 W. Main St., Locust.