Blood Supply Hitting "Severe" Low, Say Red Cross Officials

Nov 14, 2018

The American Red Cross says it’s dealing with a severe blood shortage, in Oregon and the nation as a whole.  The crisis comes ahead of winter, which is a high-need time for blood.

Blood drive.
Credit Aberdeen Proving Ground /

Across the U.S, chapters are urging people to come in and give a pint. Natividad Lewis is with the American Red Cross Cascades Region.  She says in September and October, there were 21,000 fewer donations of blood and platelets.

Credit Brian Bull / KLCC

“Fewer blood drives, coupled with the widespread cancellation of scheduled drives as a result of the Hurricanes Michael and Florence, were contributing factors.”

Lewis says the blood shortage hits just as winter nears, which is a difficult time.

“Donors aren’t available," she tells KLCC.  "They’re traveling, they’re getting involved with holiday activities.  Weather cancellations can affect drives and blood donation counts.  And seasonal illnesses.”

Lewis says people can enter their zip code on the Red Cross’ website to find the nearest chapter or blood drive. They also have an app that can synch up a user’s calendar with scheduled blood drives in their area.

Copyright 2018, KLCC.