7/28/21 - Nation Needs Blood

The American Red Cross reports a significant need for blood donations. Image courtesy of the American Red Cross. 7/28/21

Several factors are leading to a nation-wide blood shortage.

The American Red Cross is sounding the alarm saying the nation’s blood supply is dangerously low. 

Blood distribution has been running about 12 percent above the rate at this same time last year.  Hospital demand has been running above normal amounts and despite significant collection efforts, the shortage has reached a critical point.

There’s a significant shortage of Type O, which stands at just a one-day supply. 

Summertime is typically a difficult time for blood collections  Normal donors are on vacation or spending more time engaged in outdoor activities.

But some people may be concerned about safety, especially as covid-19 cases have not disappeared.

The Red Cross will take appropriate safety measures with all donations.  Fully vaccinated people are not required to wear a mask or socially distance inside Red Cross facilities.  Those restrictions are subject to change.

Donors may also be asked if they'd like to be screened for several health issues when they donate.  Test results would be available within a few weeks.

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