American Red Cross needs you to donate blood, especially types O-, O+

MILWAUKEE -- The American Red Cross always helps those in need. Right now, the lack of blood the organization has on hand is raising concern about its readiness to respond to an emergency.

American Red Cross blood drive in Port Washington

"It's always constantly needed, and it needs to be on the hospital shelves," said Lizzie Gill, spokesperson for Red Cross of Wisconsin. "Blood is needed every two seconds.

Right now, the supply for blood is significantly diminished.

"It's a lot of winter weather that can cause blood drive cancellations. Also, cold and flu season can cause someone to get deferred if they're not feeling well," Gill said.

American Red Cross blood drive in Port Washington

The solution to the problem -- a blood drive with you.

"It's totally worth it, and you just feel like you're really doing something important," said Mary Beth Partridge, a blood donor.

American Red Cross blood drive in Port Washington

At a blood drive in Port Washington on Tuesday, Jan. 21, all blood types were needed. But Red Cross officials say type O negative and O positive are urgently needed.

"If there's a time where they don't have time to blood type somebody, so it's traumatic injury -- it's a newborn baby, they're reaching for O-negative blood. So that's why it's critical," Gill said.

Several dozen people came through on Tuesday afternoon -- donating the gift of life.

There are blood donation events hosted by the Red Cross going on all over southeast Wisconsin. Find a donation time and location near you by CLICKING HERE. You may also use the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enable the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device.