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Red Cross' Overhead Expenses Much Higher Than Claimed

The American Red Cross has been claiming that 91 percent of charitable dollars are spent on services, ProPublica and NPR reports. But overhead expenses are more than charitable officials have been claiming, with fundraising expenses alone taking up 26 cents of every donated dollar, the two journalism outlets report. While the Red Cross changed the wording on its web site to now explain that 91 cents of every dollar goes to humanitarian service, "that too is misleading to donors ... Most of what the Red Cross does is take donated blood and sell it to health care providers. Of the more than $3 billion that the Red Cross spent last year, two-thirds was spent not on disaster relief but rather on the group's blood business," ProPublica and NPR further reported.