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Blood Emergency: Blood Supply Tips Into Danger Zone
Date:1/13/2009

Recession, Winter Weather Compound January's Blood Drain

NEW YORK, Jan. 13 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- New York Blood Center (NYBC) and its regional operations (serving New York City, Long Island, Hudson Valley and New Jersey) have issued an emergency appeal for blood donations.

Hospital demand for blood (needed for emergency care and surgery) has increased beyond seasonal expectations while levels of blood donation have been below forecast. Blood supplies have dropped below the five-day safety level, and for some types of blood are at a less than two-day level. Some rationing of supply has been imposed upon the 200 hospitals served by NYBC and its regional operations.

"Blood is traditionally in short supply during the winter months due to the holidays, travel schedules, inclement weather and illness," said Dr. Robert L. Jones, New York Blood Center President & CEO. January, in particular, is a difficult month for blood centers, especially following the holidays when donation levels plummet.

The current severe economic downturn has also impacted donation levels with many traditional donor groups canceling, downsizing, or postponing their blood drives to another time of year. Additionally, with 15% of regional blood collection coming from high schools and colleges, winter recess contributes substantially to the current shortfall.

"The health of our community depends on people scheduling a few minutes for blood donation, to prevent additional rationing and possible cancellation of surgery," Dr. Jones said.

Facts About Our Blood Supply

  • Ordinarily, a 5-7 day supply is required to ensure that blood is available for scheduled surgical procedures, medical treatments for cancer patients and to meet emergency or unexpected disaster needs.
  • To meet local needs, New York Blood Center and its r
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SOURCE New York Blood Center
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