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Blood shortage putting strain on hospitals

(WLUC photo)
Published: Jan. 27, 2022 at 6:00 PM EST
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - A shortage of blood donations continues to put a strain on hospitals. Now, in some cases, serious procedures and treatments are being delayed.

LifeSouth along with hospital leaders across the state are pleading for donors.

“Our current shortage is critical. It’s unlike anything we’ve seen in years,” says Laura Grill, President of East Alabama Health.

This donation shortage is impacting the care hospitals are able to provide, and the need is urgent. LifeSouth says your one donation can save up to three lives.

Blood supplies have been low for months, and LifeSouth adds the resurgence of COVID-19 and the omicron variant is causing blood drive cancellations, staffing challenges, and donor eligibility misinformation, making the shortage even more serious.

“We need blood for those who come to us for surgery. For trauma patients brought to our emergency departments,” says Joe Weaver, CEO, RMC Stringfellow Memorial Hospital. “For cancer patients and for others.”

Officials want you to consider if this was you or your loved one in the hospital, and in need of blood and unable to get it.

“Having an adequate supply of blood is essential in providing care to some of our sickest and most vulnerable patients, and right now we simply don’t have enough,” says Jeff Brannon, CEO, Flowers Hospital.

Blood donors can be 17 and older. The entire process takes less than one hour. You can make a blood donation every eight weeks. LifeSouth adds blood can be donated after receiving the Moderna, Pfizer or Johnson & Johnson vaccines for COVID-19, or the flu vaccination.

To find a blood drive, visit this link.

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