Donors are needed in the midst of a national blood shortage

Blood donations are low, in Texoma and across the nation.
Published: Sep. 12, 2023 at 10:29 PM CDT
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SHERMAN, Texas (KXII) - Blood donations are low, in Texoma and across the nation.

The American Red Cross reported that its blood supply dropped nearly 25 percent since early August. They collect and distribute about 40 percent of the country’s blood donations. They blame inclement weather and a busy travel season, according to The Washington Post that reads: “The Red Cross said “back-to-back” months of climate disasters in parts of the country have made it harder for people to get to donation centers and blood drives even as weather events like flooding and hurricanes can put greater demand on the blood supply. An unusually busy August travel season also has hampered donations.”

A phlebotomist at the Texoma Regional Blood Center, Luke Green, said that they get the most blood donations in the fall and spring seasons from the high school and college blood drives.

Green said that in Texoma, there are a number of factors of why donations are low. “A lot of people don’t even know that blood donation is a thing or they’re scared of needles. So that’s like two of the main reasons why people don’t come and donate. It’s because they don’t know if they can qualify or because they’re scared of needles.”

Green said when people do come in, they have to go through a brief process: a set list of questions they go through and answer, and a mini physical that asks about things like medications and hemoglobin levels. “Some medications you can’t donate on, such as most anticoagulants or blood thinners. And then also another parameter that you have to meet is your hemoglobin levels. So for females, it has to be at least 12.5 and males, it has to be 13.”

The Texoma Regional Blood Center is welcoming people to donate blood. “You can always call up here and ask about the qualifications, such as the medications or even travel questions” said Green.