Red Cross says its facing looming blood shortage

NEW YORK (AP) — The American Red Cross says it's facing a looming blood shortage.

The organization says Friday that donations are down around 8 percent over the last 11 weeks. That's about 80,000 fewer donations than expected.

They're calling on eligible donors of all blood types — especially O negative, B negative and A negative — to roll up a sleeve and make up the gap.

They say there's also an urgent need for platelet donations.

The Red Cross says donations usually drop during the summer, but this year Independence Day falling on a Friday meant even fewer blood drives.

This year there were just 3,450 Red Cross blood drives during the first week of July, about 1,000 fewer than in an average summer week.

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