American Red Cross facing biggest blood shortage in decades

The American Red Cross is in the middle of the worse blood shortage in decades. According to the organization, 10% of overall blood donations have declined since March 2020. “We are challenged to collect enough blood to meet hospital needs and sometimes up to 25% of a hospital’s need might not be met,” said Dr. Pampee Young, Chief Medical Officer, Biomedical Services of the American Red Cross.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The American Red Cross is in the middle of the worse blood shortage in decades.

According to the organization, 10% of overall blood donations have declined since March 2020.

“We are challenged to collect enough blood to meet hospital needs and sometimes up to 25% of a hospital’s need might not be met,” said Dr. Pampee Young, Chief Medical Officer, Biomedical Services of the American Red Cross.

The Red Cross says there are several contributing factors the top including surging COVID-19 cases, severe winter storms, blood drive cancellations and staffing problems.

“We encourage anyone who is healthy and feeling well to roll up their sleeves & make an appointment...we require masks for all of our staff and donors, and anyone associated with the blood drive, so the donation process is very safe,” said Dr. Young.

Last year, the Red Cross reported a 34% drop in new donors. This shortage is forcing hospitals to make tough decisions like who gets blood and who must wait.

A total of 45,000 units of blood are needed daily.

For more information about how to donate blood, visit RedCrossBlood.org.


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This native of the Big Apple joined the News4Jax team in July 2021.