Blood drives critical during record supply shortage nationwide
GULFPORT, Miss. (WLOX) - Healthcare workers are battling a nationwide blood shortage that’s caused supply numbers to drop to record lows.
On Wednesday, many South Mississippi residents rolled up their sleeves to help the cause during a blood drive at Memorial Hospital-Gulfport. We’re told by American Red Cross officials that there are misconceptions about giving blood versus getting a COVID-19 vaccination.
“Some people are under the impression that the American Red Cross is not taking blood from donors who have been vaccinated. That is a total misconception,” said Denise Smith with the American Red Cross. “You can get a vaccine for COVID that morning and come donate blood that afternoon as long as your feeling up to it. We still do have a short referral time between flu vaccinations and shingles shots, but as far as COVID goes, get your vaccine and come on in.”
With that supplies so low, there asking folks to also come out next week when WLOX holds its annual blood drive.
“We are at a historic low,” Smith added. “This is the lowest the blood supply’s been in more than a decade, and that is very scary. we have other drives between now and next week before the WLOX blood drive we have every year right around New Year’s.”
Next week the Red Cross will be at Pass Christian Senior Center on Tuesday and at Edgewater Mall Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
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