SAN ANGELO, Texas – Monday, January 6, 2020 – Vitalant, formerly United Blood Services, the nonprofit blood bank serving the local community in West Texas, has declared a critical shortage of blood as blood providers nationwide have less than a two days’ supply of necessary blood types.
For Vitalant, the busy holiday season resulted in over 21,000 fewer donations than expected. Due to the critical shortage, donors are strongly encouraged to give blood as soon as possible by calling 877-258-4825 (877-25-VITAL) or going online to bloodhero.org.
“We strive to maintain a 4-day supply of blood just to provide what patients need, and currently we’re at less than half that for certain blood types,” said Dr. Ralph Vassallo, Chief Medical Officer at Vitalant. “Blood on the shelf helps patients every day—for traumas, cancer treatments and critical transfusions—and enables us to be ready if disaster strikes.”
Currently, all blood types and components are in short supply, with a special need for platelets and type O blood donations. Platelets have a very short shelf life—only five days. Type O-negative blood is the universal blood type that can help stabilize all patients. Nationally, Vitalant needs to collect more than 35,000 blood products per week to meet patient needs. In the West Texas regions, we need to collect close to 200 blood products per day to meet local patient needs.
Every two seconds, someone needs blood. And even with new donations coming in daily, the demand can quickly outpace supply. Patients depend on the ongoing generosity of volunteer blood donors for the blood transfusions they need.
Who’s at risk? Everyone from accident victims to newborns to seniors who may need:
• Red blood cells for trauma, surgery, emergencies
• Platelets and red blood cells to fight chronic disease – patients with cancer, hemophilia and sickle cell disease
• Plasma to stop the bleeding – burn patients and those with clotting disorders
Vitalant Donation Center 2020 W. Beauregard San Angelo, Texas 325-223-7500
Hours: Mon, Tue and Thur Noon – 6 pm Wed and Fri 8 am – 1.30 pm Sat 9 am – 1.30 pm Sunday – twice per month
Mobile Blood Drives this week:
Wed, Jan 8 Law Enforcement Appreciation Day in parking lot of original HEB at 3301 Sherwood Way Noon – 5pm
Show your support of law enforcement by donating blood – walk away with a tshirt, Chick Fil a and Fuzzy’s Taco Shop coupons plus entry in drawings from local businesses. Law Enforcement personnel who stop by in uniform receive hot dogs, chips and a drink as a way to show our appreciation. Blood drive in support of C.O.P.S. with a monetary donation made – Concerns of Police Survivors is an organization that lends support to fellow officers and family of those killed in the line of duty.
Sat, Jan 11 Tru Fit Athletic Club Pint for a Pint blood drive 4110 Sunset Dr. 9 am – Noon
Donors get coupon for pint of ice cream courtesy of Baskin Robbins, Chick Fil A coupon and tshirt
Vitalant (“Vye-TAL-ent”) is the nation’s second largest community blood service provider, supplying comprehensive transfusion medicine services for nearly 1,000 hospitals and health care partners for patients in need across 40 states. Vitalant inspires local communities to serve the needs of others and transform lives through the selfless act of donating blood. Every day, almost 5,000 blood donations are needed to meet the needs of people throughout the country, and Vitalant’s 800,000 donors supply 1.8 million donations a year. In addition to blood products, Vitalant offers customers transfusion services, medical consulting, quality guidance, ongoing education, research and more. For more information and to schedule a donation, visit vitalant.org or call 877-258-4825 (877-25-VITAL). Join the conversation about impacting the lives of others on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.