How to help blood banks facing shortages during coronavirus pandemic

Ana Rivera Image
Thursday, March 19, 2020
Blood banks face shortages during COVID-19 pandemic
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Blood banks face shortages during COVID-19 pandemic. Ana Rivera reports.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, another medical crisis could be on the horizon--a blood shortage.

As Americans continue to practice social distancing, events all over the country have been canceled, including blood drives. According the the American Association of Blood Banks, which monitors the nation's blood supply, 4,000 blood drives have been canceled resulting in 104,000 fewer donations.

"Inventories were strained the situation is much worse," a spokesperson from the American Association of Blood Banks says.

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Locally, Triangle businesses are trying to respond to this shortage.

The Longfellow Real Estate partners will team up with the Red Cross for an emergency blood drive on Thursday from 10 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. at Keystone Technology Park. Organizers say CDC guidelines for social distance will be strictly enforced.

Morgan Street Food Hall and the Blood Connection will also host blood drives Thursday through Saturday from 12 p.m. until 7 p.m. and Sunday from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the food hall. Every donor will receive a $20 Visa gift card.

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According to the Red Cross, 13,000 donations are needed to meet daily patient needs.