‘It’s still not enough’: Blood drives popping up around East Texas as Red Cross talks shortage

Health

FLINT, Texas (KETK) – Blood drives are popping up through East Texas as a nationwide blood shortage continues.

In East Texas, people are doing their part to help medical facilities in need. Some church goers at St. Mary Magdalene Catholic Church gave blood on the Carter BloodCare bus in Flint after Sunday service.

One church member said he gives blood three or four times a year.

“It’s a matter of trying to reach out to those in need and trying to be of service. Thank God I’ve been pretty healthy all my life and I’m able to do it, I know a lot of people can’t,” blood donor Tim Knight said.

Having a large supply of blood is critical in hospitals, but blood bank workers say medical professionals are receiving less of it.

“It is going off of our shelves as fast as we can collect it and it’s still not enough,” Dr. Baia Lasky with American Red Cross said.

Doctors are calling the blood shortage “severe” because of a recent spike in trauma cases, organ transplants and postponed surgeries during the pandemic.

“We are seeing hospitals having to postpone or delay care,” Laskey said.

According to redcrossblood.org, someone in the U.S. needs blood or platelets every two seconds and approximately 36,000 units of red blood cells are needed everyday. Red Cross says that one donation can potentially save up to three lives.

“Just to maintain the hospital need we need to have 700 units of blood on the shelf coming in each and every day,” Director of Operations at Carter BloodCare Clinton McCoy said.

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