LifeSouth dealing with serious blood shortage | Health
Huntsville, AL (WAFF) - LifeSouth is sounding the alarm - they need blood donations, and they need them soon.
The company is in the grips of an emergency shortage that's now stretched out over a week and a half. They've been asking for help for several days, and there has been a response, but LifeSouth Vice President J.B. Bowles says now is the time to fill the tanks. . "Our goal is to have our hospitals fully stocked and for us to have a five to seven-day supply of all blood types to resupply them. We haven't reached that, yet. We never want to get to the point that hospitals have to delay elective surgeries because there isn't sufficient blood in reserve."
The shortage is believed to have been caused by a combination of factors - including concerns over the flu, increased usage in hospitals and the usual slowdown that accompanies wintertime and the Christmas / New Year holiday.
"We always need donors, and making up ground when supply levels drop is particularly difficult," Bowles said. "Our biggest need now is for Types O-negative and O-positive. Those are the universal donors, the type we always want on hand for emergencies, because they can immediately help anyone in need."
LifeSouth urges all eligible donors who are feeling healthy to come out and support their communities by donating blood as soon as possible. Donors must be 17 or older, or 16 with parental permission, weigh a minimum of 110 pounds and be in good health. A photo ID is also required.
For information about donating, donors can call LifeSouth toll-free at 888-795-2707 or go to www.lifesouth.org