Local Blood Donors Still Needed to Recover From Weather-Related Shortage

Local Blood Donors Still Needed to Recover From Weather-Related Shortage

"We're asking donors to help us have a strong recovery from the cold snap to help make sure we can provide a steady blood supply for our local hospitals".

The recent severe winter weather also impacted Red Cross blood and platelet donation drives.

Bad weather, illness and people traveling have contributed to a nationwide shortage of blood for medical procedures, Red Cross officials said this week. But storms across the western part of the state have set back donations.

January is National Blood Donor Month - one of the most challenging times of year to collect enough blood and platelet donations to meet patient needs. "Of the 38 percent I just mentioned, only eight percent of them actually do donate regularly, so a fraction of the population is providing the blood for everybody else". Donation appointments and completion of a RapidPass are encouraged to help speed up the donation process.

Welch said that Type O negative blood was the most needed because it can be transfused to nearly anyone and is commonly used in trauma situations.

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Donors must be at least 17, weigh at least 110 pounds and be in general good health and feeling well.

Faas said the chilly weather problem is two fold with fewer people heading out do donate and more trauma patients ending up in hospital emergency rooms due to the slick conditions.

Eligible donors with types O, A negative and B negative blood are urged to make a Power Red donation, where available.

"I would say there's no value on any blood type more than another because they can all be used for different things", Edsall said.

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