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The Red Cross National Blood Shortage

The Red Cross is experiencing the worst blood shortage in over a decade. The dangerously low blood supply levels have forced some hospitals to defer patients from major surgery, including organ transplants. Your donation is desperately needed.

The Red Cross said in a statement this week that the dangerously low blood supply levels are posing a concerning risk to patient care, resulting in medical staff making difficult decisions on who receives blood transfusions and who will need to wait until more blood is readily available

In recent weeks, the Red Cross — which provides nearly 40% of the nation's blood — said it had less than a one-day supply of critical blood types and has had to limit blood product distributions to hospitals.

The organization says that at times, up to one-quarter of hospital blood needs are not being met. Additionally, the pandemic has also contributed to a 62% drop in blood drives at schools and colleges.

"Winter weather across the country and the recent surge of COVID-19 cases are compounding the already-dire situation facing the blood supply," said Dr. Baia Lasky, medical director for the Red Cross.

Each Red Cross blood drive and donation center follows high standards of safety and infection control. Red Cross employees have implemented added precautions to ensure blood drives and donation centers are safe for donors and staff.

We are taking the following precautions to help ensure the safety of our employees, volunteers, and donors.

  1. Spacing beds 6 feet apart
  2. Requiring Face Masks
  3. Wiping down donor touched areas
  4. Having hand sanitizer available

AABB encourages eligible individuals to donate blood regularly to help ensure that this lifesaving resource is readily available to patients whenever and wherever it is needed. To find an AABB-accredited blood donation site near you, please provide at least a state or zip code (for best results) using the Blood Donation Site Locator below.

Once you have identified your nearest donation site, please be sure to first call ahead or visit their website to schedule an appointment and ensure donor eligibility.

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