Cold and Flu Season Causes Blood Shortage - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Cold and Flu Season Causes Blood Shortage

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According to the American Red Cross, every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood. But in the winter, officials say the number of donors drops. 

Mt. Olivet United Methodist Church in Taylor has a blood drive every couple of months. And for many members of the congregation that give, it's personal.

"My grand-daughter was diagnosed with cancer when she was two and a half and she received a lot of blood," said blood drive coordinator Barb Burkhardt.

  "My family has been the recipient of people who have donated," said donor Donna Reid 

"It helped a friend of mine who had leukemia, and that's the reason we do all of this," said donor Leeann Scott.

Dozens came out to the church today to contribute and Burkhardt said she's happy with the results they have had.

"We've been having between 19 and I think last month we had 25 units that were given."

But for some this time of the year, it isn't just a matter of deciding they want to give.

Officials with the American Red Cross said that there is usually a blood shortage during cold and flu season, but with this year it is especially bad, with more people unable to give blood until they are completely symptom free. 

Mark Carpenter was sick for the last blood drive.

"Almost makes you feel like you let somebody down, but you can't help being sick," he said.
But that one pint of blood that someone who's sick can't give, could go to help three people, according to the American Red Cross.

Officials say that it's especially important for healthy people to give blood.

If you are interested in donating blood, you can find a location near you here.

 

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