Red Cross mobilize blood donations for Hurricane Ian victims

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Andres Gutierrez/CBS Detroit


(CBS DETROIT) — As Florida communities are dealing with the devastation Hurricane Ian left in its path, Michigan organizations are already offering aid and relief.

Hospitals are in dire need of blood to treat injured survivors.

With search and rescues underway, the American Red Cross has sent several hundred units of blood to ensure plenty for patients in hard-hit areas.

“My heart goes out to everybody that that lost, you know, their possession or their homes, everything,” Deborah Jackson, a blood donor, said.

Watching the devastation was even more reason for Jackson and others to show up at one of the blood drives the Red Cross in the Michigan region hosted Thursday.

“You know, it made me feel better about doing it to see if we can help them out there. It looks like it hit them pretty bad.,” Katie Peterson, another blood donor, said.

The organization can move blood quickly around the country but when a monster storm like Ian happens, finding a large quantity of it isn’t easy.

“When we have a disaster, you need to donate blood, And people say, ‘well, why do I need to donate blood?’ they don’t realize because those areas cannot collect for weeks or months from now,” Beth Frahm, Donor Resource Development Representative for the American Red Cross of Southeast Michigan told CBS Detroit.

And because of its perishable nature, it can’t be stockpiled.

The Red Cross encourages all blood types to donate, but the demand is more significant for Type-O.

Depending on the injury or the type of infusion, one donation can help save one to three lives.

“It can mean the difference between life and death,” Jena Baker-Calloway, a blood donor, said. “And so it’s a little prick, and it’ll be over in no time, and you will done a world of good.”

If you would like to learn how to donate blood, visit: https://www.redcross.org/local/michigan.html

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