The American Red Cross is issuing a critical need alert for blood donations.
According to the Red Cross the number of traumas, elective surgeries, and transplants is increasing nationwide. The organization reports that the nation's blood supply has fallen to critical levels.
“Which is why it is so important that if you are healthy and eligible that you are making an appointment to come out and help those who rely on these critical blood donations every single day," said Jocelyn Hillard, who works for the American Red Cross.
Lawrence and Memorial Hospital in New London uses about ten pints of blood every day. They use the blood for everything from trauma to cancer care. The hospital has not been able to keep as much blood in storage as usual because of the shortage, but they have not had to reschedule any procedures at this point.
“Luckily, but we have gotten to a point that we were pretty worried about having to do that," said Dr. Oliver Mayorga. "Now we are getting to a point where we are actually able to congregate again and actually donate blood so I think this is the time to donate.”
Lucas Prado, 15, has relied on blood transfusions every three weeks since he was a baby. He has a blood disorder and the only treatment comes directly from donated blood.
"I am really thankful for them because with out them I wouldn’t be alive," said Prado.
The Red Cross, L&M Hospital, and Prado's family are all urging people to donate blood.
“They can remember him and remember his face and remember that this is a life they are saving. A change they are making," said Concetta Perreault-Prado, Lucas's mom.
NBC Connecticut and Telemundo Connecticut Blood Drive
NBC CT and Telemundo CT are partnering with the American Red Cross and the Yard Goats for their annual summer blood drive on Tuesday June 15.
The blood drive will be held at three different locations: Dunkin' Donuts Park in Hartford, Farmington Gardens in Farmington and West Hartford Town Hall.
You can call the Red Cross at 800-733-2767 or download the Red Cross Donor App, Enter Code: NBCCT to sign up for any of the three locations.