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Harsh weather leaves donation centers with low blood supply

Published: Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014 5:30 a.m. CST • Updated: Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014 9:31 p.m. CST
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(Photo provided)
Heartland Blood Centers’ has a mobile bus. Blood drives postponed in recent weeks because of the harsh weather have left a blood donation center with low blood supply. Heartland is asking those who can donate blood to do so.

Blood drives postponed in recent weeks because of the harsh weather have left a blood donation center with a low blood supply, but some area hospitals haven’t been affected.

Heartland Blood Centers officials said Wednesday the extreme cold weather in the past month has caused the cancellation of 21 blood drives across the northern Illinois and northwest Indiana regions that the nonprofit center serves.

Those drives would have brought in roughly 2,000 units of blood, and now officials are wanting immediate blood donations to meet the needs of 49 hospitals, an effort that requires almost 600 units of blood daily, said Jill Moeggenberg, Heartland Blood Centers’ mobile recruitment director.

“We need all blood types,” she said.

They are asking for communities to reschedule canceled appointments and for eligible blood donors to make an appointment as soon as possible.

Donors who have become sick with illnesses, such as the flu, have also caused drive cancellations.

“There are no snow days for patients in hospitals,” Moeggenberg said. “They still need the treatment they need and many times that means a blood transfusion.” 

But low blood supplies from Heartland Blood Centers has not affected Morris Hospital & Healthcare Centers.

“Morris Hospital has not received any notification that we will be rationed,” Janet Long, spokesperson for Morris Hospital & Healthcare Centers, said Wednesday.

A community blood drive is scheduled for Wednesday at Morris Hospital & Healthcare Centers in Morris, and will give residents and staff a chance to make a donation. The blood drive will run from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. at Morris Hospital, 150 W. High St. in Morris.

“We offer blood drives four times a year in cooperation with Heartland,” Long said. “It’s open to our staff as well as the community.”

To schedule an appointment for the Wednesday blood drive, call 815-364-8915 or visit Heartland Blood Centers at heartlandbc.org.

Walk-ins also will be accepted.

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