Less Than A Day's Supply Of Blood Now On Wisconsin Shelves

Versiti Blood Center of Wisconsin issues emergency appeal for blood donations; blood types O-negative, O-positive most needed
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MILWAUKEE, June 13, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Versiti Blood Center of Wisconsin is issuing an emergency appeal for blood donations as communities across the state face a potential crisis with blood supplies dropping to critically low levels. All blood types are needed with type O-negative and O-positive blood most in demand.

"As COVID-19 restrictions ease, allowing people to gather again and enjoy all that a Wisconsin summer has to offer, the attention has shifted away from blood donation, creating a crisis for the state's blood supply," said Dr. Dan Waxman, vice president of transfusion medicine and senior medical director at Versiti. "We are urgently seeking help from our loyal donors and the public and asking that anyone able, to please donate blood today. Your donation is vital to ensure that Wisconsin hospitals have the blood they need for their patients."

In Wisconsin, the state's blood supply has dropped to a critically low level, with less than a day's supply of life-saving blood on shelves to supply Versiti's more than 68 hospital partners throughout the state. Ideally, Versiti strives for a three-day supply of blood available to its partner hospitals.

Compared to a typical year, Versiti Blood Centers is down more than 40 percent in donations - or nearly 20,000 units of blood - while the need for blood has increased nearly 10 percent over historical averages.

Blood donors are needed now to help ensure life-saving blood is available for Wisconsinites who need it. One donation of blood, which takes less than one hour, can help save up to three lives.

O-negative and O-positive blood donors are most needed now. O-negative blood is the universal blood type, meaning donations can be transfused to all patients, including trauma victims, cancer patients and those undergoing surgery.

Effective June 14 - 21, Versiti is expanding capacity and extending hours at its centers to help with donation collection. We ask that donors visit a Versiti Blood Center of Wisconsin donor facility nearest to them:

  • GREENFIELD: 7210 W. Edgerton Avenue
  • KENOSHA: 8064 39th Avenue
  • MARSHFIELD: 508 N. Central
  • MANITOWOC: 619 Reed Avenue
  • MILWAUKEE: 638 North 18th Street
  • RACINE: 1120 S. Sunnyslope Drive
  • WAUKESHA: 2111 Springdale Road
  • WEST BEND: 130 Valley Avenue
  • WAUWATOSA: 8733 Watertown Plank Road

Wisconsin residents can also make an appointment to donate at a local community blood drive in their area. Times, dates and locations of upcoming local drives can be found online at https://donate.wisconsin.versiti.org/. Interested donors should click the "Schedule to Donate" tab to find the nearest drive to them.

Donating blood takes about an hour with the actual donation taking 10-15 minutes. Anyone age 17 or older in good health who meets eligibility requirements is encouraged to give. Parental consent is required for donors age 16 to donate blood. Donors should bring a photo ID that includes their birth date.

Donors who are fully vaccinated are not required to wear a face covering while in Versiti facilities. Non-vaccinated donors are asked to continue to wear a face covering, except where medical conditions prevent them from wearing one. All Versiti donation locations are practicing social distancing and closely adhering to FDA and CDC cleaning and disinfecting protocols.

Appointments are encouraged at any of Versiti's Wisconsin donor centers or any local community blood drive. Walk-ins are always welcome. To schedule an appointment to donate blood, call 1-866-642-5663 or visit Versiti online at versiti.org/WI.

ABOUT VERSITI BLOOD CENTER OF WISCONSINVersiti Blood Center of Wisconsin is a not-for-profit organization headquartered in Milwaukee that specializes in blood services, esoteric diagnostic testing, organ, tissue and stem cell donation, medical services and leading-edge research. We advance patient care by delivering life-saving products and services. For more information, visit versiti.org/WI.

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SOURCE Versiti Blood Center of Wisconsin