Organizations seeing large shortage in blood donations | Connecticut News


(WFSB) – Several of the country’s biggest blood donation organizations are sounding the alarm about a shortage in donations.

They say hospitals are rescheduling surgeries because of the lack in supply.

This isn’t your average blood shortage.

“We are seeing a historic low. Some of the lowest blood donations in the past decade,” said Jocelyn Hillard, Regional Communications Director of the CT Chapter of the American Red Cross.

Two years of the COVID-19 pandemic has slowed donations.

According to the Connecticut chapter of the Red Cross, they’ve seen a nearly 30% decrease in new donations this year.

Car accidents, emergencies, and surgeries aren’t going away.

“Blood recipients need that blood every single day,” Hillard said.  

So far, the local healthcare system seems to be managing throughout the shortage.

Bristol hospital confirmed they had to reschedule one of their surgeries.

Other hospitals are also concerned.

Waterbury Hospital says they upped their yearly blood drives.

On a normal year, they hold three to four, but administrators say: “To help alleviate blood supply shortages, this year we held six very successful blood drives here at the hospital.”

“If you match all the requirements, I don’t see why you wouldn’t,” said Olivia Shuey, who donated blood.

If you recently tested positive for COVID-19 and you want to donate blood, there are some things you need to know.

“Our number one priority is that you are feeling healthy and well,” Hillard said.

If you’ve had symptoms of COVID-19 in the past 14 days, or if you’ve tested positive regardless of your symptoms in that same time frame, the Red Cross wants you to hold off on donating until you’re better.

In the meantime, they’re hoping to find more eligible donors who see the importance of avoiding a bigger shortage down the road.

“I would hate to imagine someone in that situation and there not being any blood for them. That feels like the worst-case scenario,” Shuey said.

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