SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (The Daily Dish) – The American Red Cross of Utah is recognizing the contribution of the phlebotomy team during National Phlebotomists Recognition Week. The week-long event, which runs from Feb. 13-17, is dedicated to celebrating phlebotomists’ vital role in maintaining patient health and promoting lab efficiency and effectiveness.

As one of the main providers of the nation’s blood supply, the Red Cross collects, tests, and distributes over 5 million units annually. The phlebotomy team plays a crucial role in this process, ensuring that blood draws go smoothly and safely, while interacting with and supporting the donors.

With the help of volunteer blood donors, transfusable blood for medical treatments is made available across the country. National Phlebotomists Recognition Week comes at a time when the Red Cross has seen many weather and illness-related blood drive cancelations across the country, threatening the nation’s blood supply.

The Red Cross depends on the more than 200 phlebotomists in Utah and over 5,500 nationwide to provide lifesaving blood to those in need. In an effort to support the community, the Red Cross is encouraging individuals to schedule a blood donation appointment or to become a volunteer blood donor ambassador. Volunteers can help greet, check-in, and thank blood donors to ensure they have a positive donation experience, or become transportation specialists to ensure that lifesaving blood products are delivered to hospitals.

To learn more about volunteer opportunities in Utah with the American Red Cross click here.