Donating blood is as easy as tapping an app

BANGOR, Maine (WABI) - Every two seconds someone in the U.S needs blood according to the American Red Cross.

The American Red Cross is looking for blood donations after Hurricane Dorian causes the closure of many donation sites. (Photo: MGN)

Blood supplies are low and the Red Cross is in dire need of donations.

So, why not give the gift of life this holiday season?

Brian Cotler started giving blood a few years ago. He says, "The first time I gave blood somebody was having a drive and come to find out I'm O-Negative. Since O-Negative is the universal donor I felt a social responsibility to continue to give."

And every 56 days later, Cotler gives more blood and technology helps remind him.

He says, "The American Red Cross has an app where it'll show you your digital donor card, it'll show you your blood type."

You can also schedule your next blood donation through the app.

And once you give, it shows your bloods journey.

Cotler says, "You can follow your blood donation and find out where it goes. Not specifically to the person but at least to the region. It's neat to be able to follow that and track it and know that you're making a difference and an impact."

And for Cotler it's all about giving back.

He says, "It's a worth investment. It's like paying it forward, the way I see it. Maybe one day, God forbid, something should happen to me, I should be hospitalized, or if I should be in an accident and need blood I would want it to be available. I see it as my way of paying it forward should that happen and if not, then someone else can benefit and have that life saving gift."

During this season of giving, the American Red Cross and WABI-TV5 invite eligible donors to give the gift of life on Friday, Dec. 13 with a blood donation at one of two locations:

SeaDog Brewing Company
26 Front Street, Bangor
Hours: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Stanley Subaru
22 Bar Harbor Road, Ellsworth
Hours: noon to 6 p.m.

To schedule an appointment, visit https://www.redcrossblood.org/give.html/find-drive and enter the sponsor code “WABI”; call
1-800-RED CROSS or download the Red Cross Blood Donor App available through the App StoreSM and Google PlayTM.