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Blood supply for local hospitals lowest since 2015

Published: Oct. 29, 2021 at 7:39 PM CDT
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JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - A national blood shortage is causing blood supply lows one hospital in Jonesboro hasn’t seen since 2015.

St. Bernards tells Region 8 News that the Red Cross prefers to have five days’ worth of blood available to distribute to local hospitals.

Recently, only about half a days’ worth has been available at a time.

Dr. Kimberly Ingersoll works with the blood bank at St. Bernards, she said they’re seeing especially low levels of type O and plasma.

This is usually the time of year when blood banks are replenished through donations and blood drives.

However, Ingersoll said they’re seeing fewer people getting out and donating.

“Usually the summer and then right around Christmas and Thanksgiving is when we have lows and right now is when we’re doing a little better and unfortunately right now we’re at a pretty significant low level for our shortages,” said Ingersoll.

St. Bernards has also seen an increase in the amount of blood being used which further impacts the amount of blood available.

With the holidays coming up, Ingersoll said they’re concerned with how low the blood supply is.

“It’s hard to know how long this will last. And I think a lot of us in the blood bank are concerned that we’ll have shortages through the holidays just because that’s typically a time when there is some shortage,” said Ingersoll.

Ingersoll said they hope to see more people donating blood in the coming months, and the best way to do that is through a blood drive.

To find a blood drive near you, visit the Red Cross website here.

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