LifeShare Blood Center is urging all people eligible to donate blood do so. The blood collection agency issues and emergency appeal for donors earlier with week to mixed results. There was an uptick in donors but it hasn't been enough to meet the need.
"Our inventory levels are still continuing to hover around historic low levels," said Elizabeth Cunningham, regional director of LifeShare. "Without our donors we don't have blood in our hospitals. Take the time to donate."
LifeShare has seen an outpouring of support in Texarkana and Shreveport, La., but fewer donors have donated in Alexandria and Monroe, La., according to a press release from the organization.
Hospitals are still dealing with the shortage.
"The turnout was good, but it wasn't great," said Benjamin Prijatel, senior director of blood operations. "We really aren't in a better place, and our hospitals are feeling it. O positive blood is the blood most often used for transfusions and right now we only have a 12-hour supply."
LifeShare, located at 4020 Summerhill Road in in Texarkana, Texas, will be open from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. today and from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday.
"On Sunday we are opening for special hours due to the emergency appeal," she said. "We've also added several community blood drives to the schedule."
Check lifeshare.org for information about specific drives.
"Donating blood isn't necessarily on the front of anyone's mind unless they've had a family member or friend need blood, and a lot of times if it wasn't recently, they don't think about it, but if people don't donate hospitals won't have blood. There is no manmade product for blood. The only way we have it is for people to donate," Cunningham said.
LifeShare supplies blood to seven local hospitals.
Donors who have questions about their eligibility can call LifeShare at 903-794-3173 or email firstname.lastname@example.org