Washington, DC - AABB, America’s Blood Centers and the American Red Cross are issuing a critical appeal for blood and platelet donors across the country. With the nation’s blood supply facing significantly low inventory levels, the blood community encourages individuals throughout the U.S. to schedule an appointment to donate.

“Maintaining a safe and adequate blood supply is critical to the nation’s public health and a priority for the medical community,” said Miriam A. Markowitz, CEO of AABB. “Every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood. It is indispensable and required in the treatment of millions of patients, including individuals with cancer and other life-threatening diseases, patients undergoing organ transplants and trauma victims.”

Summer is always a challenging time for blood centers to ensure an adequate blood supply due to donors taking vacations and schools being out of session. Despite the season, the need for blood remains constant and patients continue to depend on the generosity of blood donors to meet that need. All blood types are needed.

It is the blood that has already been collected, screened and tested that is used during an emergency. Eligible blood donors are encouraged to schedule an appointment to give.

Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental consent in most states), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.

About AABB

AABB is an international, not-for-profit association representing individuals and institutions involved in the fields of transfusion medicine and cellular therapies. The association is committed to improving health through the development and delivery of standards, accreditation and educational programs that focus on optimizing patient and donor care and safety. AABB membership includes physicians, nurses, scientists, researchers, administrators, medical technologists and other health care providers. AABB members are located in more than 80 countries and AABB accredits institutions in over 50 countries. For more information, visit www.aabb.org. AABB is responsible for the Interorganizational Task Force on Domestic Disaster and Acts of Terrorism. The Task Force membership includes representatives from government agencies as well as blood establishments.