The United States is in a critical blood shortage. According to the American Red Cross, every day approximately 29,000 units of red blood cells are needed in the United States. Unfortunately, this country and many others are running out.
Earlier this year, the American Red Cross announced a national blood crisis, its worst blood shortage in over a decade. A blood crisis can delay critical blood transfusions and pose a risk for cancer patients, trauma victims, and others with ongoing health problems. In addition, with a limited supply of blood, doctors are forced to put pauses on lifesaving treatments and surgeries as they wait for more blood to arrive.
“Safe blood and blood products are an essential element of every health care system. Since the pandemic, blood donations have drastically decreased and they are still nowhere near back at the level needed,” says Melissa Marquardt, lab blood bank technical specialist at Aspirus.
Every year, countries around the world celebrate World Blood Donor Day held on June 14. This national observance is a time to thank and recognize those who have saved countless lives by donating, and also serves to remind everyone of the safe blood and blood products needed around the world.
Out of the 35 percent of Americans who are eligible, only 10 percent donate. Blood and platelets cannot be manufactured; they can only come from the generosity of volunteer donors. To find out if you are an eligible donor, call the Blood Center of Northcentral Wisconsin at 866-566-5900 or the Community Blood Center at 800-280-4102.
Donations take on average one hour and with just one donation, several lives can be saved.
To locate a blood drive near you, visit : Blood Center of Northcentral Wisconsin at https://www.bcnwi.org/ or call 715-842-0761 or The Community Blood Center at https:// www.communityblood.org/ 800-280-4102.