URGENT:  Extreme Weather Brings Blood Collections to a Halt

Over 800 blood product donations lost due to donor center closures and mobile drive cancellations

MORGAN CITY, LA (January 17, 2018)—Extreme winter weather has stifled the ability for United Blood Services, this area’s blood service provider, to collect life saving blood products.  Donor centers have been forced to close and mobile drives cancelled on several days, resulting in a loss of over 800 blood donations which equates to lost blood products.   Widespread a particularly nasty flu season has already resulted in lower blood donor turnout since the beginning of the year.

Mitzi Breaux, the Marketing and Communications Manager of United Blood Services said there is an urgent need for donations.

Over 800 blood product donations lost due to donor center closures and mobile drive cancellations

United Blood Services in Morgan City, located at 1234 David Drive Suite 102, will now resume normal operating hours and will be open tomorrow, Thursday, January 18 from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Friday, January 19 from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Noon.

With severe weather and flu pounding states throughout the country, blood centers everywhere are facing the same challenges adding additional pressure on an already strained national blood supply.

Donors are urged to donate as soon as possible.  Those who have never donated before are encouraged to make their first donation in January.   All blood types are needed, with type O-negative most in demand. O-negative is the universal blood type and can be given to patients of any blood type. It is often used for premature infants and in emergency situations. Platelet donors are needed as well. Platelets are used primarily for cancer patients. Their shelf life is very short—only 5 days.

Donors can schedule an appointment to donate at www.bloodhero.com.  Walk-ins are welcome.

Blood donation takes about an hour from check-in to refreshments. Donors can save about 20 minutes by completing their Fast Track Health History the day they donate. It’s at www.United Blood Services.org.

Volunteer blood donors must be at least 16 years old, weigh at least 110 pounds and be in good health. Additional height/weight requirements apply to donors 22 and younger, and donors who are 16 and 17 must have signed permission from a parent or guardian. Donors receive a free cholesterol test.