Flu outbreak, winter storms hurt blood donations

Shawano area residents have two upcoming opportunities to help the American Red Cross blood banks.

A blood drive will be held Feb. 23 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Shawano Community High School, 220 County Road B. On March 5, a blood drive will be held at Shawano City Hall, 127 S. Sawyer St., also from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Healthy donors of all blood types are urged to roll up their sleeves to maintain a sufficient blood supply. Due to winter storms and the recent flu outbreak, many donors have missed their appointments to give blood and platelets. About 600 blood drives have been canceled due to severe winter weather.

Blood and platelet donations are needed in the coming days to help replenish the blood supply and ensure patients continue to receive lifesaving treatments. Donors can help even more patients when they invite a loved one, friend or co-worker to give with them.

Make an appointment to donate this winter by downloading the free Red Cross blood donor app, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).