Donations needed as Red Cross faces nationwide emergency blood shortage

Lowest post-summer blood supply in six years.
Published: Oct. 4, 2021 at 9:44 AM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - The American Red Cross is facing a nationwide emergency blood shortage and pleading with the public to donate blood and platelets.

It’s the lowest post-summer blood supply in six years.

“I like the thought of giving back to people in the community,” said Denise Moynihan, a donor at a Tucson donation center Sunday.

Her frequent donations are making a big difference. The Red Cross is reporting a 10 percent drop in donor turnout nationwide.

“Some of them might be the return to work, COVID surging in certain areas and we’re certainly not immune to that in southern Arizona,” said Courtney Slanaker, the executive director of the Southern Arizona American Red Cross.

Slanaker said their chapter works with Tucson Medical Center and Banner Health providing 90 percent of the hospital blood supply.

“Cancer patients need platelets and things like that,” she said. “People facing emergencies are still getting the blood they need but maybe elective surgeries are being postponed.”

The Red Cross is encouraging anyone who is eligible to make an appointment to donate as soon as possible. Donors can even track their blood’s journey through the organization’s donor app.

“It will let you know when your blood has been used which is a very gratifying moment to know you were able to help save or sustain someone’s life,” she said.

Learn more about donating blood or platelets and how you can make an appointment, HERE.

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