American Red Cross issues urgent call during ' Blood Emergency'

The American Red Cross of Illinois has issued a 'Blood Emergency' saying nearly 17,000 donations were down during the Fourth of July week. (MGN)

Ill. (KWQC) - The American Red Cross of Illinois says they are currently in a Blood Emergency -- with less than a 3 day supply of most blood types when they usually have at least 5 days worth of supply.

The Fourth of July holiday week brought a challenge for finding new donors and finding organizations who were available to host blood drives. According to the American Red Cross, there were about 450 fewer blood drives, which accounts for about 17,000 fewer blood donations that are needed for patients in a single week.

“Medical emergencies and critical treatments don’t stop for holiday celebrations. Patients depend on lifesaving blood transfusions every day,” said Cliff Numark, senior vice president, Red Cross Blood Services.

Donors of all blood types, especially type O, are urged to make an appointment to donate using the Red Cross Blood Donor App , at Red Cross Website or by calling 1-800-RED-CROSS