Red Cross now accepting blood donations in Colorado

DENVER (KDVR) — If you’ve given blood in Colorado, it’s most likely been through Vitalant or the hospital itself, such as Children’s Hospital of Colorado.

American Red Cross — typically the go-to for blood drives across the country, as it collects and distributes roughly 40% of the nation’s blood supply — has been unable to collect blood in the state, as there was no infrastructure present in Colorado or Wyoming for the Red Cross to collect, and the Denver location was not zoned properly for such collection.

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The organization had never collected blood in Colorado, until April 1.

“Every two seconds, someone in this country needs blood. The Red Cross is thrilled to bring this lifesaving opportunity to Denver,” Gino Greco, CEO of the American Red Cross of Colorado and Wyoming, said in a release.

While blood collection has not been ongoing, blood distribution has been conducted by the Red Cross in the Denver metro area. The organization said it supplies nearly 33,600 units of blood and blood products to 14 hospitals in the area, and now it will collect blood locally for distribution as well.

“It’s a big deal because life-saving blood is a big deal, first and foremost. We already provide hospitals with blood here in the Denver metro area,” Greco said on Monday. “So this is just an opportunity for us to meet the request that we get all the time from people who want to donate blood and they can now do that with the American Red Cross.”

The Red Cross blood donation center is located within the organization’s Denver office on Speer Boulevard at the corner of Fifth Avenue and Sherman Street. Blood donors can sign up for an appointment at redcrossblood.org.

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Vitalant, which has been the leading blood donation service in Colorado, is one of the country’s largest nonprofit blood and biotherapy organizations and says it serves over 95% of Colorado’s hospitals. It has a variety of options to schedule a blood donation appointment or join a blood drive.

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