opinion logo

We’ve been hearing over the last several months about the need for blood donors.

And over the past few days, the American Red Cross and ImpactLife have both put out calls for blood donors, as those blood banks are continuing to experience an emergency blood and platelet shortage.

Blaming it on the recent COVID-19 case surge and the busy back-to-school period, blood collection organizations say they are experiencing an abnormal decline in donor turnout; others are experiencing blood drive cancellations at schools and businesses limiting the number of individuals allowed onsite as a precautionary pandemic practice. These collection challenges have disrupted the nation’s blood supply, resulting in very low inventories of blood products across the country for patients in need.

The Red Cross says its supply has dropped to its lowest post-summer level in at least six years. With less than a day’s supply of certain blood types in recent weeks, the Red Cross asks donors of all blood types – especially type O − to make an appointment to give blood or platelets as soon as possible to ensure patients can receive the lifesaving transfusions they rely on. Appointments can be made by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

To shore up inventory, the Red Cross says it must collect 10,000 additional blood products each week this month to meet hospital and patient needs. Locally, the Red Cross will conduct a blood drive from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Oct. 26 at Community Reformed Church, 747 N. 12th St.

ImpactLife also is joining blood providers across the United States in issuing an urgent appeal for additional donors as blood drive and appointment cancellations combine with a staffing shortage to cause a decrease in donations. ImpactLife currently has less than a 5-day supply of red blood cells for nearly all blood types, with type O donors especially needed as O-negative and O-positive inventories are at just a one- to two-day supply. Platelet and plasma donors of all types, especially type AB, are also needed.

Appointments are required for donation. To schedule, call (800) 747-5401 or schedule online at www.bloodcenter.org, or via the ImpactLife mobile app (www.bloodcenter.org/app).

The need is here.

Our hope is that those who can give will make an appointment to do so.

Trending Video