Blood Bank of Delmarva is calling on donors to sign up for appointments at local donor centers or pop-up locations due to a shortage of blood.
The state of the local blood supply mirrors the current shortage across the nation, officials said. Before COVID-19, donors could stop by community blood drives at convenient locations like high schools, college and offices. It has been more than a year since these groups had to cancel their blood drives due to COVID-19 and few have been able to resume these life-saving events.
BBD currently has a 3.7-day supply of blood currently available for distribution, which is well below the seven-day supply needed by area hospitals.
The region’s healthcare system requires 350 to 380 people to donate each day to treat patients ranging from trauma victims to newborn babies and their mothers to cancer patients. Donors with type O and type A blood are especially needed as BBD currently has a 0.7-day supply of O positive, 1.9-day supply of O negative and a 4.2-day supply of A positive blood.
“With thousands getting vaccinated each day, we are thrilled to watch our state recover from this catastrophic year,” Patricia Killeen, senior executive director and vice president of enterprise optimization at Blood Bank of Delmarva, said in a prepared statement. “Across the country, blood centers are reporting the same concerning trend: a decline in blood donations. As our region bounces back in strides this spring, we need everyone to make an appointment and donate blood to help save lives. While the end of the pandemic is near, our struggle to fight for those in need continues."
Donations are by appointment only and can be scheduled by calling 1-888-8-BLOOD-8 or visiting their website.