With many regular donors delaying giving to take final summer vacations and prepare for school to start, the American Red Cross has an emergency need for blood and platelet donations to help end a summer blood shortage.

Make an appointment to donate blood now by downloading the free Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enabling the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device. Those who donated blood earlier this summer may be eligible to give again. Blood can be safely given every 56 days, and Power Red donations can be given every 112 days.

With the help of a generous $1 million donation from Amazon, the Red Cross is thanking those who help overcome the shortage by coming to give July 29 through Aug. 29 with a $5 Amazon.com Gift Card via email. (Restrictions apply; see amazon.com/gc-legal. More information and details are available at RedCrossBlood.org/Together.)

How to donate blood

Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enable the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), 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.

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