Blood donations critical due to recent weather

LIFELINE Blood Services recently announced that last week’s winter weather has led to a dangerous shortage of blood across West Tennessee.

“Our blood supply has reached critically low levels,” said Caitlin Roach, Marketing Manager with LIFELINE. “We had to cancel fourteen mobile blood drives last week due to ice and snow. We also had to close our Dyersburg Center for several days and did not have many donors in Jackson due to road conditions. It is urgent that people come out and donate blood this week.”

West Tennessee requires an average of 525 units per week to have enough blood to meet local needs. The inability to draw blood last week has caused an emergency situation regarding the community blood supply. To put it in perspective, if there were any kind of trauma at area hospitals, there would not be enough blood available for the patient. LIFELINE does not currently have enough O type blood in its community blood supply to sustain normal usage from hospitals, much less a trauma.

“We are begging people of all blood types to come in and donate as soon as possible,” said Roach. “We need people to respond now. The blood supply has taken hit after hit from the pandemic, the inability to visit industry and schools for blood drives, and now the snow and ice. The roads are pretty much clear now, so we are asking the public to respond in a big way. Personal disasters are going on in people’s lives every day and many of these require blood transfusions. Please donate blood now!”

Lifeline Blood Services has two fixed site locations where donors can give whole blood, plasma, and platelets. The Jackson Center is located at 183 Sterling Farms Drive and is open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. The Dyersburg Center is located at 1130 Highway 51 Bypass Suite 19 & 20 across from Lowes and is open Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Wednesday and Saturday from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Walk-ins are welcome. However, if you would like to make an appointment, you may text the word “schedule” to 999-777. To speak with someone about donating blood, call 731.427.4431, ext. 0.

This week’s Mobile Blood Drives scheduled across West Tennessee are listed below:

Monday, February 22
Union City: EW James & Sons – 1 pm to 7 pm
Humboldt: Wal-Mart – 12:30 pm to 5:30 pm
Selmer: Food Giant – 2 pm to 6 pm

Tuesday, February 23
Paris: TCAT – 9 am to 11:30 am; 12 pm to 2 pm
Newbern: TCAT – 9 am to 1 pm
Henderson: Piggly Wiggly – 1 pm to 6 pm

Wednesday, February 24
Paris: Henry County Medical Center – 9 am to 12 pm; 12:30 pm to 4 pm
Jackson: Union University – 12 pm to 5 pm
Milan: First United Methodist Church – 1 pm to 5:30 pm

Thursday, February 25
Dyersburg: West TN Healthcare-Dyersburg Hospital – 12 pm to 4 pm
Trenton: Food Rite – 12:30 pm to 5:30 pm

Friday, February 26
Oakland: First Citizens National Bank – 12 pm to 5 pm
Kenton: Simmons Bank – 12 pm to 4:30 pm

Saturday, February 27
Jackson: Paul Latham Meat and BBQ – 10 am to 2 pm

LIFELINE provides blood services to 20 West Tennessee counties and 13 emergency helicopter service locations. Annually, the Center collects approximately 26,000 blood products (red cell units, platelets, plasma, etc.) to meet the needs of patients. Of that total, 75% of those products are collected on the bloodmobiles across West Tennessee. LIFELINE also provides reference lab and cross-matching services to healthcare facilities.

Raven Trevathan

Raven Trevathan

Administrative Assistant

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