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Community Blood Bank says there is a critical need for more donations

Published: Apr. 15, 2021 at 7:20 PM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - The Sioux Falls Community Blood Bank has declared a critical blood shortage for “Type O” and “Type A.”

Getting blood donations has been a struggle all over the country during the pandemic. With fewer blood drives and fewer people who are willing to give blood., the low amount of blood available makes any accident a cause of concern for hospitals.

“Individuals are getting out there it is springtime they are wanting to get on the road, wanting to travel and we are seeing an uptick in car accidents,” said Dawn Ver Hoeven, Laboratory Operation Manager for Avera McKennan. We are seeing farmers are getting out there and we are seeing an uptick in farm-related accidents.”

While all types of blood are needed, the Community Blood Bank Executive Director Ken Versteeg says, “Type O” and “Type A” make up 70% of the demand for Sioux Falls.

“On average, we will use between 400 and 450 units of blood per week. Right now, we’re seeing, we’re using up from 450 to 550 and 600 units of blood per week,” said Versteeg.

Some in the Sioux Falls area have already been called to donate.

“I received a call from the hospital saying there was a shortage, and my blood type is one I can give to everybody,” said Kari Castilleja, a blood donor. “I think it’s highly needed blood, so I just wanted to come out and do my part.”

The Community Blood Bank is making sure to do what it can to make donating blood as safe as possible during the pandemic.

“We want people to understand the best thing they can do is to fill our schedules are schedules are set up to provide a safe environment for them to donate in and it is safe to donate blood right now and right now is the time to make that decision,” said Versteeg.

For those who are looking to donate click here and select register for a donation.

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