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Critical Blood Shortage: Donors Needed!
Sunday, June 14, 2020 @ 8:00 am - Tuesday, June 30, 2020 @ 5:00 pm MST
Critical Blood Shortage Announced: Vitalant Calls on Donors to Help Patients Now
Florence & Maricopa Locations: Donors Strongly Urged to Make Appointments at vitalant.org or 877-25-VITAL
May 21, 2020 – Arizona Statewide – Vitalant – the nation’s largest nonprofit, independent blood collector – serving the local community here in Arizona, has declared a critical shortage of blood as supplies have been significantly impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. Shelter-in-place orders led to 566 blood drives canceled since early March in Arizona alone, resulting in a loss of more than 17,000 uncollected blood donations. That, coupled with a resumption of surgeries and other medical procedures as stay-at-home restrictions were lifted, has caused a 25% increase in the need for blood during the past several weeks.
All blood types are critically needed right now, with an especially high need for type O, A-negative and B-negative red blood cells. In addition, platelets are always needed by patients for cancer treatments, surgeries and emergencies. Because of its short shelf life – only 5 days – the supply of platelets must be continually replenished.
Donors are strongly urged to give blood as soon as possible by going online to vitalant.org or calling 877-258-4825 (877-25-VITAL).
Public Blood Drives by City
Sun, June 14, 10am-2pm, American Legion Post 9, 441 N Main St, Comm Rm Right of Entry
Mon, June 29, 9am-1pm, Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino, 15406 Maricopa Rd, Bingo Hall
“We strive to maintain a 4-day supply of blood just to provide what patients need, and currently we’re at less than half that for certain blood types,” said Dr. Ralph Vassallo, Chief Medical Officer at Vitalant. “It’s absolutely vital – a matter of life or death for some – to have enough blood collected and readily available on hospital shelves when patients need it.”
In Arizona, Vitalant must collect more than 600 blood donations every day to meet patients’ transfusion needs. Every two seconds, someone needs blood. Vitalant urgently needs donors to make an appointment today to ensure a stable blood supply.
Vitalant recently released its Because of You, Life Doesn’t Stop campaign, calling on all donors to take action now and give blood or convalescent plasma to meet immediate and ongoing needs. Recovered COVID-19 patients have immune-boosting antibodies to the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus in their plasma, which can be given to patients currently fighting COVID-19.
“The public responded when thousands of blood drives were canceled – more than 100,000 units of blood lost nationwide – at the beginning of the pandemic,” said Cliff Numark, Chief of Marketing. “We are in the aftermath and we need to let people know that without donating blood today, life could stop for hospital patients.”
The U.S. Surgeon General and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) have designated blood donation as an essential activity, encouraging healthy and eligible donors to continue to donate even amidst COVID-19 response measures. From coast to coast, all Vitalant centers continue to deploy strict precautionary measures to ensure the safety of donors, patients and staff, including:
• Taking donors’ temperatures upon check-in (staff self-monitor their temperatures)
• Requiring face masks or cloth-based face coverings (donors and staff)
• Disinfecting donor-touched and other high-touch areas often and after every donation
• Ensuring social distancing to keep donors and staff safe.
For more information on donating blood, view the PSA. To join the larger conversation about blood and plasma donations visit: Twitter, Instagram and Facebook and use the hashtag #VitalToLife.
Insights, messaging and creative donated by LRW Group Companies including LRW, T3 and Karma Agency.Additional data provided by LRW partner LUCID.
Vitalant (“Vye-TAL-ent”) is the nation’s second largest community blood service provider, supplying comprehensive transfusion medicine services for nearly 1,000 hospitals and health care partners for patients in need across 40 states. Vitalant inspires local communities to serve the needs of others and transform lives through the selfless act of donating blood. Every day, almost 5,000 blood donations are needed to meet the needs of people throughout the country, and Vitalant’s 800,000 donors supply 1.8 million donations a year. In addition to blood products, Vitalant offers customers transfusion services, medical consulting, quality guidance, ongoing education, research and more. For more information and to schedule a donation, visit vitalant.org or call 877-258-4825 (877-25-VITAL). Join the conversation about impacting the lives of others on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
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