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Health

Red Cross removing letters in Missing Types campaign

A, B and O being dropped from text to illustrate need for blood types

The American Red Cross wants people to fill in the blank during its Missing Types campaign.

The campaign is removing the letters A, B and O from social media pages, signs and websites to raise awareness of the need for those three blood types in the nation's blood supply, according to a news release.

"When the letters A, B and O vanish from everyday life, the gaps are striking," Red Cross officials stated in the news release. "And when A, B, O and AB blood types go missing from hospital shelves, patient care and medical treatments are affected."

Blood transfusion is the fourth most common inpatient hospital procedure in the United States, the Red Cross reports. The nation's blood supply is collected only from volunteer donors. The Red Cross reports the average number of donors is low: three out of 100 people in the U.S. give blood.

“Just last month, the Red Cross experienced a critical shortage of type O blood. When this happens, medical procedures could be delayed because blood products are not available,” said Cliff Numark, senior vice president of Red Cross Blood Services. “That’s why we are asking those eligible to help fill the missing types by making a donation appointment today. Don’t wait for the letters A, B and O to go missing from hospital shelves again.”

Donors can schedule donations by visiting RedCrossBlood.org/MissingTypes, using the Red Cross Blood Donor App or calling 800-733-2767.

Upcoming blood drives scheduled in La Salle County include:

• Noon to 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 18, Illinois Valley Chapter Donation Center, 1530 Fourth St., Peru.

• 8:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday, June 20, New Beginnings Baptist Church, 204 S. Monroe St., Streator.

• 2 to 6 p.m. Monday, June 24, St Paul's Evangelical Lutheran Church, 509 E. Broadway St., Streator.

• 10:45 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, July 2, Mendota Moose Lodge, 211 E. 12th St., Mendota.

• Noon to 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 2, Illinois Valley Chapter Donation Center, 1530 Fourth St., Peru.

• 1:30 to 5:30 p.m. Friday, July 5, First Baptist Church, 1401 State St., Ottawa.

• 1:45 to 6 p.m. Friday, July 5, New Beginnings Baptist Church, 204 S. Monroe St., Streator.

• 2 to 6 p.m. Monday, July 8, United Methodist Church, 423 Wauponis St., Tonica.

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