Blood Supplies Reach Dangerously Low Levels Coast-to-Coast

Henrietta Brewer
July 11, 2017

Blood donations fell short of expectations the past two months, resulting in about 61,000 fewer donations than needed and a significant draw down of the Red Cross blood supply.

Virginia Blood Services says blood supplies across the Commonwealth and the country are "dangerously low".

"At a local level, Toowoomba Blood Donor Centre needs to collect 450 blood donations every week to ensure they have sufficient stock on-hand when patients need it".

Donations from O-negative donors are especially important this time of year due to increased accidents and trauma cases.

Platelet donations - which have a shelf life of only five days and are needed for those being treated for cancer - are in high demand as well.

All types of blood are needed.

Current forecasting projects a shortfall of 5,700 donations in July and greater shortfalls throughout the summer.

"During the cold and flu season, our national blood stocks come under real pressure", Sandee said. Walk-ins are welcome at any United Blood Services location.

Blood donation takes about an hour from check-in to refreshments.

Individuals who are at least 16 years of age (16 and 17 with parental consent), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in general good health may be eligible to donate blood.

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