Blood shortage cause for concern on heels of pandemic

It’s an emergency on the heels of a pandemic - a blood shortage.
It’s an emergency on the heels of a pandemic - a blood shortage.(WTOC)
Updated: May. 31, 2021 at 6:26 PM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - It’s an emergency on the heels of a pandemic - a blood shortage.

Officials a local blood center say they are seeing fewer donors than any time in their history, which is a major concern for local hospitals, like Memorial who are in need of blood.

“Right now, we are very, very concerned for this community that blood is not going to be there when somebody needs it. That’s the severity of this situation,” said Allie Van Dyke, Media Coordinator for The Blood Center.

It’s a dangerous equation. Historically low donations and an increase in the need for blood as trauma cases spike. This is leading to some scary situations for the Blood Connection.

“It’s putting us in a really tough position because when I say inching towards a blood shortage what that means is we will start to have to ration our blood meaning when hospitals give us their orders we’re having to decide where the blood products are actually going to go sometimes we won’t be able to give hospitals everything they need.”

The blood connection says about half of the days in May they were not able to collect enough blood to cover hospitals’ needs. They say their donations are lower now than they were during the peak of the pandemic and need your help right away.

“We are relying on the community and we’re putting the pressure and the responsibility on the community shoulders because the reality is they are the only ones that can fix this.”

Officials say the best way you can help right now is by making a donation yourself at one of their centers or being an advocate for others.

“The solution to this problem is people coming out and trying to donate blood and you will get a gift for donating, you will save up to three lives. It’s important for your community, it’s important for your neighborhood and I really just hope people understand how big of a deal this is.”

Leaders say your donation will help ensure our hospitals get the blood they need to save lives.

WTOC will be partnering with the Blood Connection for an upcoming four day blood drive. It will take place on Sunday, June 12 through Wednesday, June 16. It will be at the Blood Connection’s new donation center located at 1915 East Victory Drive, in the Victory Square shopping center next to the Dollar Tree. Each donor will receive a $20 Visa gift card.

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