Hospital patients need blood. Where are the donors?

Friday, 12 Jan, 2018

The blood center only carries a two-day supply of O-negative blood, a crucial and rare blood type that is compatible with any patient, and is in need of platelet donors.

But recent severe weather and a cold snap have forced at least 200 blood drives to be cancelled so far this year.

According to the Red Cross, someone in the United States needs blood every two seconds. and approximately 36,000 units of red blood cells are needed every day - one auto accident victim could require as many as 100 pints of blood.

The Red Cross tries to prioritize locally, but can distribute blood to hospitals all over the country. "This is due to the holidays in November and December, as people are traveling and schools are on break, and then in January and February we lose blood drives due to school closings and travel conditions". It opened as a Red Cross site March 2017.

O-negative blood is considered the universal donor and can be given to any patient in need, while B-negative blood blood can be transfused to B positive and negative donors.

The Red Cross made a number of urgent calls for blood previous year after donations fell short, leaving some regions with less than a one-day supply.

Isenor said the organization tries to keep a five-day blood supply on-hand at all times, but that the winter months are a hard time to collect donations due to the holidays and sicknesses from the cold weather.

In addition, donations are on the decline due to the aging population of regular donors.

Samantha Pollard, Red Cross spokeswoman for the Midwest Blood Services Region, said winter weather has not yet significantly affected Nebraska as a whole.

Call Swett at (815) 224-0232 to make an appointment or visit redcrossblood.org/RapidPass for information.

In trauma situations, she explained, it is especially useful if doctors don't have time to determine someone's blood type - making it the most requested by hospitals. "We're in a critical need".

- Friday, Jan. 12 - The Knights of Columbus in Clarksburg is hosting a blood drive sponsored by the American Legion Post 13 from 1:30 p.m.to 7 p.m.

Annie Goshay, phlebotomist at the Wright-Patt Medical Center, prepares Airman 1st Class Hannah Donabauer for a blood donation.

Ball Corporation, 300 W. Greger St., Oakdale, 10 a.m. -4 p.m. Tuesday.

Ceres Community Center Battle of the Badges, 2701 Fourth St., 11 a.m. -5 p.m. January 19.