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Rhode Island Blood Center (RIBC) and Connecticut Blood Center (CTBC) announced today a blood emergency, as school breaks and increased travel have caused an alarming drop in donations.
According to a press release, the blood supply currently stands at a 2-to-3-day level; platelets along with types O and B- are at just a 1-to-2-day supply. This is well below the ideal inventory of 5-7 days.
Hospitals and patients rely upon a steady flow of volunteer donors to receive life-saving blood donations. According to the latest figures put out by America’s Blood Centers, only 3 percent of the U.S. population donates blood.
“This time of year can always be difficult for the blood supply, with school breaks and increased travel making blood donations less of a priority,” said Beau Tompkins, Senior Executive Director of the RI & CT Blood Centers. “We highly encourage all who are able to please donate today to help us meet this critical need in our community.”
According to the press release, it only takes one hour to donate, and a single donation can save multiple lives. Roughly one in seven hospital admissions requires a blood transfusion. Those in need include cancer patients, accident, burn, or trauma victims, transplant recipients, surgery patients, chronically transfused patients suffering from sickle cell disease or thalassemia, and many more.
RHODE ISLAND BLOOD CENTER (RIBC) was founded in 1979 as a nonprofit community blood center. For over 35 years, RIBC has been the primary supplier of blood and blood products to patients being cared for in hospitals throughout Rhode Island and in neighboring states. Our mission is to help save lives by ensuring a safe and plentiful blood supply to the patients and hospitals we serve. RIBC is also part of the National Marrow Donor Program and collects stem cells for transplant at its Providence location. RIBC provides therapeutic treatments for patients in local hospitals. Our state-of-the-art laboratory performs donor testing for over 400,000 donations per year. RIBC is also involved in various local and national research programs to improve all aspects of the blood supply. RIBC is a division of New York Blood Center, Inc. (a family of operating Divisions known as New York Blood Center Enterprises). For more information, visit ribc.org.
CONNECTICUT BLOOD CENTER (CTBC) supplies blood and blood products to patients being cared for in over a dozen Connecticut hospitals. CTBC operates a hospital services blood storage depot from our Connecticut center so we can quickly and reliably get urgent or unexpected orders to local hospitals. CTBC is operated by the Rhode Island Blood Center, a part of the New York Blood Center Enterprises family with more than five decades of experience saving lives by ensuring a safe and plentiful blood supply to the patients and hospitals we serve. CTBC is also part of the National Marrow Donor Program, registering individuals throughout New England to become lifesaving stem cell donors for patients who need a transplant to survive.