LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- This Black History Month, American Red Cross of Southern Nevada is aiming to keep African Americans with sickle cell disease healthy.

blood donation

A bandage covers an arm after a blood donation in an undated image. (File)

The Red Cross said the disease affects one out of 365 people in the Black community, including two members of the Dozier family in Las Vegas.

Jonathan Dozier is currently in the hospital due to a complication from sickle cell. Christia, 11, had a blood transfusion and is resting. Many people with the disease need regular transfusions.

"She has to have an exact genetic match in order for her to continue doing more than sleeping," said, Venessa Dozier.

The Red Cross is encouraging everyone to donate. However, African Americans are typically a better match for those with sickle cell.

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