Katie Marshall, spokeswoman for the Midwest region of the American Red Cross, says there’s an “emergency need” for blood donors.
“What we’re seeing at this point is that the blood that’s coming in is going out to hospitals just as quickly as donors can come in and give it,” Marshall says.
Blood supplies were already low at the start of the year because of the usual slowdown in donations around the holidays, but supplies have been further depleted by winter storms.
Several blood drives in Nebraska were among the more than 300 blood drives that were cancelled across 20 states since January 1st.
“Many blood drives have been cancelled for days on end and that really takes a toll on the whole blood supply nationwide,” Marshall says.
Blood supplies have been hit especially hard by the blizzard that struck the East Coast a weekend ago. But, wintery weather in Nebraska has also resulted in delayed donation drives.
“We can’t get to certain rural communities if ice hits on a certain day or there’s just a little bit too much snow,” Marshall says.
Blood donation appointments can be scheduled by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting redcrossblood.org, or calling 1-800-RED CROSS.