Memorial Blood Centers Announce Blood Emergency

DULUTH, Minn. — Yesterday, Memorial Blood Centers announced another blood emergency.

An already alarmingly low blood supply has become even more scarce across the Northland.

Memorial Blood Centers reported its current supply of blood as enough for two days, which they said is well below the ideal level of five to seven.

The shortage has been consistent for many weeks. Wendy Capetz with Memorial Centers explained the urgency of the situation.

“Blood is needed everyday and we need every type of blood everyday. There are only about 7% of people who donate blood here in Minnesota.”

Capetz said the shortage comes from post-pandemic impacts; take the traveling blood mobile for reference, it used to bring in a large portion of blood to the Northland.

Amidst the pandemic, many organizations, businesses, and schools went remote. Meaning the once popular mobile now has no where to go.

“The pandemic really threw us for a loop, because more than 50% of the blood that we normally collect was on a blood mobile or blood drive in the community.”

Ongoing staffing shortages also contribute to the limited amount of blood sites. In addition, the summer season has many potential donors occupied by sunshine and leisure.

Day in and day out, hospitals still depend on eligible donors for lifesaving blood.

“One blood donation takes you less than an hour and the actual time that you have a needle in your arm is probably about 10 minutes. So, in one hour, you can save the life of a person and maybe multiple people.”

Capetz stated that the majority of blood donated locally goes solely to hospitals within the area.

“If everyone who was eligible to donate blood would donate just one more time in a year, we would not have a blood shortage. You can make a difference in the life of your family, your friends, your community by donating.”

To schedule an appointment at a local donor center or blood drive visit mbc.org/donate.

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