Red Cross: Blood donations urgently needed

July 14, 2018

Blood Drive

An emergency blood shortage has prompted the American Red Cross to issue an urgent call for donations.

The Red Cross escalated its call for blood and platelet donors after a difficult Independence Day week. About 550 fewer blood drives were organized by businesses and other community groups last week than during a typical week. This could equate to as many as 15,000 fewer donations than needed, causing donations to be distributed to hospitals faster than they come in, according to the organization.

“Each and every day, individuals across the country depend on blood and platelet donations for lifesaving treatments and emergency care, so it’s critical that people donate now to meet these needs,” Cliff Numark, senior vice president of Red Cross Blood Services, said in a press release. “Whether you’ve never donated or give a couple of times a year, you’re needed to give as soon as possible to help save patient lives. Yours may be the donation a patient is counting on.”

This need is especially critical for Type O blood donors. Type O is the most in-demand blood type and often the first to be depleted from hospital shelves. Type O negative is the universal blood type and what emergency room personnel reach for when there is no time to determine a patient’s blood type.

Blood drives are scheduled in the following Somerset County locations:

Berlin: 12:30 to 6 p.m. July 30 at the Veteran’s Home Association of Berlin, 419 Meadow St.

Hooversville: 2:30 to 7 p.m. July 23 at Holy Family Catholic Church, 301 Sugar St.

Somerset: 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, July 14, at Tri-Star Somerset, 1260 N. Center Ave.

Somerset: Noon to 5:30 p.m. July 24 at Grace United Methodist Church, 320 Felgar Road

Journalists to speak at Flight 93 memorial

Two journalists who had firsthand experience covering the crash of United Flight 93 will give their perspectives on the events of Sept. 11, 2001, and their aftermath on July 21-22 as part of the Flight 93 National Memorial Speaker Series.

Dennis Roddy covered the story for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and helped oversee much of the newspaper’s award-winning coverage of the aftermath of the terrorist attacks. Joining Roddy will be Tim Lambert, a Harrisburg-based radio journalist who reported from the crash site and whose family owned the hemlock grove that has become a prominent part of the memorial.

The programs are scheduled for noon and 2 p.m. on Saturday, July 21, and 1 p.m. on Sunday, July 22, in the memorial’s Learning Center. Lambert will speak on both days and Roddy on Saturday only. Admission is free.

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