The Melbourne Cup is one of the nation's biggest racing events, with many Australians getting in on the festivities to celebrate the race.
The Australian Red Cross Blood Service is urging people to donate blood in the days following the major event with supplies expected to decline as the race takes centre stage.
The group is concerned that the stocks of platelets will take a big hit as a result of limited donations around the country and the Victorian long weekend.
Platelets only have a shelf life of five days, with Blood Service spokesman Shaun Inguanzo saying that they were needed to help treat cancer patients.
"The Melbourne Cup is the race that stops the nation, but it shouldn’t be the race that stops donation," he said.
He added that given their short shelf life, platelets collected on Friday will have expired by Wednesday.
"Platelets are vital to helping cancer patients survive chemotherapy, so we need more people to roll up their sleeves and give blood on the Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and following week to help us replenish our stocks and continue saving lives."
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