It's been a tough month for the Red Cross to get blood donations and this week's winter storm didn't help.

Red Cross spokeswoman Jamie Muldrow says since the beginning of January, the frigid weather has now resulted in more than 600 Red Cross blood drive cancellations and nearly 20,000 uncollected blood and platelet donations.

The winter season is already a challenging time of year for the Red Cross to maintain a sufficient supply of blood and some of those reasons, of course, include cold temperatures, the holiday season, and many folks are sick with the flu and other types of season illnesses,” Muldrow says.

The Red Cross is urging eligible donors of all blood types to make an appointment to give blood – especially type O-negative, the “universal” blood type.

Blood donation centers re-opened on a limited basis Thursday, but plan to resume normal business hours on Friday.

Donation appointments can be made at 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or checking online at