COVID-19 severe blood shortage; Red Cross drives canceled; fewer donations

The American Red Cross is facing a severe blood shortage due to an unprecedented number of blood drive cancellations during this coronavirus outbreak, the agency said Tuesday.

Healthy individuals are needed to donate now to help patients counting on lifesaving blood.

The Red Cross issued the following alert:

Through March 16, nearly 2,700 Red Cross blood drives have been canceled across the country due to coronavirus concerns, resulting in some 86,000 fewer blood donations.

• Workplaces, college campuses and schools are canceling their blood drives as these locations temporarily close and more people are being told to work remotely and practice social distancing.

• We are expecting cancellations to continue to increase, which is causing heightened concern for blood collection organizations and hospitals across the country.

We understand why people may be hesitant to come out for a blood drive, but want to reassure the public that we have implemented additional precautions to ensure the safety of our donors and staff in response to concern, including:

• Checking the temperature of staff and donors before entering a drive to make sure they are healthy

• Providing hand sanitizer for use before the drive, as well as throughout the donation process

• Spacing beds, where possible, to follow social distancing practices between blood donors, and

• Increasing enhanced disinfecting of surfaces and equipment. We also want to emphasize that at each blood drive and donation center, Red Cross employees already follow thorough safety protocols to help prevent the spread of any type of infection.

This blood shortage could impact patients who need surgery, victims of car accidents and other emergencies, or patients suffering from cancer. One of the most important things you can do to ensure we don’t have another health care crisis on top of the coronavirus is to give blood.

As a nation, this is a time where we must take care of one another, including those most vulnerable among us. If you are healthy and feeling well, please make an appointment to donate as soon as possible by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@federalwaymirror.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.federalwaymirror.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in News

City of Kent loses third attempt to halt King County quarantine facility

Judge rules city permits not needed for emergency use of former motel, but will be for future plans

Federal Way mayor implements emergency relief measures to combat economic impacts of COVID-19

Mayor places freeze on landlord late fees charged to renters; City also to donate $15,000 to Multi-Service Center food bank.

Washington scrambles to boost supply of life-saving protective items for healthcare workers

State officials say they had to be “creative” to obtain protective equipment in global demand.

Gov. Jay Inslee discusses the COVID-19 pandemic and the state’s response during a press conference on Thursday, March 26. Screenshot
Inslee: Stay-at-home orders must continue to completely eliminate COVID-19

Slight decrease in rate of new coronavirus cases, but residents must continue to hunker down.

At St. Elizabeth Hospital in Enumclaw, a patient is taken from an ambulance through a small door marked “decontamination” on March 23. It was unclear whether the patient was suspected of being infected with COVID-19. (Photo by Ray Miller-Still/Sound Publishing)
King County releases breakdown data of COVID-19 cases, deaths

Washington’s virus-related death toll surpasses 129 as of Wednesday, March 25.

Former Kent pro soccer team owner to face Kirkland rape charge

Dion Earl extradited from Arizona while doing time for sexual assault

Entrance to the Tukwila Library branch of the King County Library System on March 17. KCLS announced March 13 that it would be closed until April at earliest in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Mitchell Atencio/staff photo
KCLS pivots to digital during coronavirus pandemic

KCLS is dedicating more time and content to digital services while unable to open its physical locations.

Most Read