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Emergency blood shortage due to weather and flu, officials say

Posted at 12:53 PM, Jan 16, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-16 19:25:35-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Visiting Nurse Association hosted a blood drive Tuesday.

Ellen Larson was one of a handful of people who went. She’s been donating since high school. 

“I've tried to give as much as I can whenever it works out,” Larson said.

VNA CEO Brad Evans said the need is critical right now due to the weather and the flu. 

"The flu has reached almost epidemic levels here in the Kansas City area. The hospitals are at full capacity," Evans said. "The weather certainly doesn't help with patients, getting in and out of their homes, so what we do is really important."

Evans said blood centers usually keep a three-day supply of blood on hand, and right now they're only at a one-day supply. 

“We service numerous hospitals around the Kansas City area, and if we don't have the blood and they have patients that need it that can't have's pretty serious,” Sarah Michael with the Community Blood Center said.

One donation could save three people’s lives

If you're looking to donate near your area, you can check out the Community Blood Center or the American Red Cross.