The Des Moines-based LifeServe Blood Center is seeing its blood supply fall as people’s free time is taken up with vacations and warm weather activities. Claire DeRoin, LifeServe’s community relations director, says the lower supply doesn’t mean less blood is needed.
“Ninety percent of the population will need blood at some time in their lifetime,” DeRoin says. “You never know when it could be you or a family member or a neighbor.” She says the center is hoping to keep a full supply of blood on hand during the critical summer months. Each donation of blood has the potential to help multiple people, be they accident victims or someone undergoing surgery.
DeRoin says, “One donation of blood, which is one pint, can go on to help save the lives of three hospital patients in need.” She encourages anyone who’s eligible to visit the website, set up an appointment and make a donation.
“Donors have to be at least 16 years old and weigh 120 pounds and be in general good health,” DeRoin says. “You can’t come in with a cold or anything like that because safety is the #1 priority for you and the blood supply.”
The two blood types that are in highest demand now are A-B negative and O-negative. LifeServe supplies blood to nearly 100 hospitals in Iowa, South Dakota and Nebraska.