EAU CLAIRE, Wis-- The severe winter weather caused the Red Cross to cancel 1,500 blood drives in January in February. The cancellations affected 35 states and have left the organization short of 50,000 units of blood.
Cory Miller with the Red Cross says the shortage hasn't resulted in hospitals being shorted but they are hoping to replenish the bank as quickly as possible.
The Red Cross is in need of all blood types. Type AB is especially needed. Only about 4 percent of the U.S population has type AB blood. Type AB is crucial because it is considered universal donor and can be given to any patient regardless of blood type.
Appointments to donate blood or platelets and help patients in need can be made by visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS.
To give blood or platelets, someone must be at least 17 years of age 16 in some meet weight and height requirements and
be in generally good health.