Winter storms, frigid temperatures and widespread flu are making it harder for Kansas City to maintain its critical blood supply.
As Community Blood Center (CBC) and area hospitals continue to operate in a state of blood emergency, CBC urges new and existing donors to donate and for businesses and community groups to organize life-saving blood drives in the coming weeks to replenish the community’s blood supply.
CBC’s inventory took a large hit during the height of the holiday season and continues to see a significant drop in donations due to the cold and flu season, and winter weather, including the snow and ice storms that canceled local blood drives over the past three weeks.
While donations during the winter months experience an annual lull, this year’s falloff was significantly sharper than expected. With the holiday season behind us and a new year upon us, it’s time to roll up our sleeves and donate. The entire donation process takes less than an hour, and a single donation can be used to save multiple lives.
CBC is calling on donors with all blood types to donate as the already low O-negative “universal donors” and O-positive blood types are currently covering area hospitals’ urgent demand to help cancer patients, new mothers and emergency victims who require urgent blood transfusions. CBC requires approximately 580 donors every weekday to meet area hospital needs. About one in seven hospital admissions requires a blood transfusion, and with a limited shelf life, supplies must be continually replenished.
“The holidays hit blood donations hardest,” CBC Senior Executive Director Kim Peck said. “Coupled with bad weather and the cold and flu season, donor turnout wasn’t as strong as last year around this time. The community is in dire need of life-saving blood, and it’s imperative that more organizations get active in helping out their community by organizing drives in the next few weeks — when we need it most.”
Please donate at a blood drive or any of the following CBC donor centers:
- KansasCity, MO – 4040 Main Street
- Overland Park, KS – 10568 Metcalf Ave., Times Square Shopping Center
- Olathe, KS – 16465 West 119thSt., Olathe Entertainment District
- Gladstone, MO – 7265 N. Oak Trafficway
- Blue Springs, MO – 1124 SW US Highway 40
- Topeka, KS – 6220 SW 29thStreet
- St. Joseph, MO – 3122 Frederick Avenue
If you cannot donate but still wish to participate in bringing crucial blood products to patients in need, please ask someone to donate for you or consider volunteering at a local blood drive.
To donate blood or for information on how to organize a blood drive, call 1-888-647-4040 or visit savealifenow.org.