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Red Cross officials expect holiday season to add to blood shortage

Published: Dec. 23, 2021 at 4:28 PM EST
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) - The American Red Cross says it is still seeing a historic blood shortage.

Officials say they are seeing the lowest blood inventory in over a decade.

American Red Cross Ohio River Valley executive director, Sharon kesselring, says that the shortage will likely extend with the holiday season.

She says there is usually a drop in supply around this time every year.

This is typically because fewer people donate blood around the holidays and because there’s usually an increased need around the same time.

This year though, the shortage is worsened by the tornadoes that went through the Midwest a few weeks ago.

“So, we are concerned that something like that could happen again,” says Kesselring. “A major occurrence that we would not be properly prepared for. And that’s part of our mission is to be properly prepared. We can only do that when people schedule an appointment to give blood and actually follow through with that appointment.”

To promote blood donations, Kesselring says people who donate now through January 2 will get a long-sleeve Red Cross t-shirt.

And, in January, donors will have their names submitted for a chance to win prizes. Including a chance at going to Super Bowl LIV in Los Angeles for a getaway.

Kesselring also says if you are unable to donate but still want to help, you can apply to be a volunteer for the red cross.

You can find information on how to sign up by clicking the link for chance to donate blood or to become a volunteer.

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